Quote Of The Year

Timeless Quotes - Sadly The Late Paul Shetler - "Its not Your Health Record it's a Government Record Of Your Health Information"


H. L. Mencken - "For every complex problem there is an answer that is clear, simple, and wrong."

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

It Seems Blockchain For Health Data Ideas Are Popping Up Everywhere. It’s Getting Crowded!

This popped up a few days ago:
  • 01.04.18

Can This App That Lets You Sell Your Health Data Cut Your Health Costs?

CoverUS wants to use the blockchain to let healthcare companies reward you for the data they now buy from your insurance company.

Americans could do with new ways to save on healthcare. Obamacare-administered plans are set to get more expensive by up to 50% this year amid uncertainty around federal subsidies that help pay for premiums. The cost of employer-sponsored insurance, meanwhile, continues to jump well above inflation. Many of us are hit with surprise medical bills we can’t afford.
CoverUS, a startup, has one idea: monetizing our health-related data. Through a new blockchain-based data marketplace, it hopes to generate revenue that could effectively make insurance cheaper and perhaps even encourage us to become healthier, thus cutting the cost of the system overall.
It works like this: When you sign up, you download a digital wallet to your phone. Then you populate that wallet with data from an electronic health record (EHR), for which, starting in January 2018, system operators are legally obliged to offer an open API. At the same time, you can also allow wearables and other health trackers to automatically add data to the platform, and answer questions about your health and consumption habits.
A prototype of the app. [Screenshots: CoverUS]Why bother? To create a richer picture of your health than is currently held by the EHR systems, health providers, and data brokerages that buy and sell data from doctors, clinics, pharmacies, and other sources. By collecting all our data in one place, CoverUS wants to give us more autonomy over who uses our personal information and who makes money from it.
“From a moral standpoint, we think people should own their healthcare data. It’s currently being brokered to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars without most of us knowing that it is happening,” cofounder Christopher Sealey tells Fast Company. “Secondly, we believe that healthcare data is most valuable when it’s in an individual’s hands because your electronic medical records and prescriptions only paint part of the picture. Nobody knows better than you how you are doing.”
The health data brokerage industry includes companies like Iqvia, Cinven, and Veeva. They buy and sell anonymized data under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), as well as non-anonymous health data not covered by that privacy standard, including what you put into search engines and health websites. Drug companies use this data to develop new products and target treatments to particular doctors and hospitals based on prescribing patterns. The data mining companies are often criticized for being intrusive, but it’s arguable if their profiles are even consistently accurate. When a reporter for The Atlantic downloaded her file last year, she found that the data was missing a good deal of necessary information.
CoverUS, which plans to launch in the first quarter of 2018, will pay for the data we gather in the form of a fixed-price cryptocurrency called CoverCoin. Users generate coins by signing up and then sharing their data. The startup then hopes users will be able to spend the coins on services that improve their health (like gym memberships) or deposit them in a health savings account where the coins can be exchanged for insurance plan savings. Sealey says it’s in discussions with several providers.
More here:
I was instantly reminded of this article just a week or so ago:

Rebuffed by the ADHA, E-Nome looks to GP and hospital systems to enable people to access their health information and sell it on

Lynne Minion | 19 Dec 2017
The Australian Digital Health Agency has denied claims by technology start-up E-Nome that patients will be able to access their My Health Record and sell their medical data to researchers, governments, pharmaceutical companies and insurers via the company’s upcoming app.
But head of E-Nome Nick Curtis has told Healthcare IT News Australia the My Health Record data isn't crucial to the success of the company's platform, with plans to integrate into GP, hospital, allied health services and wearables systems, enabling people to trade their most private of information, including genomes.
The Daily Telegraph reported on Monday that E-Nome was seeking investors to fund the development of its online platform.
According to the company's Position Paper, the app will allow individuals to share their de-identified health data with whomever they choose.
“E-Nome’s business is about providing a platform by which the consumer is empowered to be placed in the middle of a global market worth billions of dollars a year trading their data,” E-Nome’s position paper says.
“Current data collection and transfer is managed by major corporate intermediaries. These corporate intermediaries profit directly from the inefficiency and constraints in data collection. E-Nome is seeking to disintermediate data transfer in the health sector.”
The company is seeking to raise revenue by offering a new crypto-currency called Nomes for sale and hopes a two-stage investment process raises up to $60 million to fund the development of the “E-Nome Ecosystem”, including the E-Nome App, E-Nome Research Portal, E-Nome Medical Practitioners Portal, E-Nome Electronic Data Warehouse and the E-Nome Core.
Vastly more is found here:
It rather looks like there are a few players emerging in this domain. I wonder is the ADHA considering blockchain technology as part of the “replatforming” efforts?
That would move them to the bleeding edge!

Post script:

Steve Wilson has tweeted a useful link as a bit of an antidote to all this:


Thanks Steve.


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