A look at blockchain consortia in healthcare

Hi everyone -


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Blockchain and healthcare updates

Hashed Health’s recent newsletter focused on blockchain and healthcare consortia

Hashed Health always has insightful content and this piece didn’t disappoint. They identify seven major consortia:

  • Synaptic Health Alliance

  • Professional Credentials Exchange

  • Health Utility Network

  • Coalesce

  • RemediChain

  • MediLedger

  • Melloddy

They created a great spreadsheet detailing the members of each consortia, the design pattern (“Data synchronization, Asset Exchange, Multi-party business coordination”), use cases, and more. I appreciated the key trends and takeaways they synthesized, agreeing with them all and the conclusion that “there is a swell coming” as enterprises seek to participate in the initial use cases which have proven value. Moreover, it’s useful to see the common design patterns in use cases laid out in one place, and the very fact that there are repetitive use cases/business models signals a maturing industry, as I laid out in last week’s issue.

Some other activity you should pay attention to:

  • The IMI anchored Blockchain Enabled Healthcare consortia with a handful of major pharma companies was recently funded in full, albeit it has yet to kick off.

  • The FDA DSCSA pilot has several projects under it where businesses are collaborating with blockchains, I wouldn’t be surprised to see some of these turn into consortia and open up.

  • MediLedger has three significant parts to it: the FDA DSCSA piloting the 2023 interoperable system requirement, the Saleable Returns working group, and the Contracting and Chargebacks working group.

  • The clinical supply chain working group detailed below.

Hashed Health is conducting a 2 minute survey on the state of blockchain in healthcare

Seriously, I took it and it actually takes 2 minutes or less. It is also anonymous. Hashed Health is going to releasing the results of this survey, so I’d encourage my readers to take it.

A low profile working group including major pharma industry leaders is publishing more details about their work

LedgerDomain, the same company partnered with UCLA in the FDA DSCSA pilot is implementing a track and trace solution for clinical supply chains through the KitChain project. This is an interesting use case as clinical supply chains (e.g tracking bio-specimens or investigation products in a clinical trial) have many of the same problems as commercial supply chains (e.g traditional drug distribution channels). But it is much easier to get all of the parties in a clinical supply chain on the same system.

This work is sponsored by the Blockchain for Clinical Supply Chain – Industry Working Group, which is boasts Pfizer, Biogen, AstraZeneca, Merck, GlaxoSmithKline, Thermo Fisher, IQVIA, UCLA, Deloitte, Marken, Bracket, and Almac as members.

Podcast: Decentralizing Research and Development of Molecular Compounds

Webinar: Heather Flannery, Dr. Alex Cahana, and myself were recently on a ConsenSys webinar talking about blockchain and healthcare


What I’m reading this weekend

Numerai, a crowdsourced hedgefund that leverages cryptoeconomics, launched “an open market place for information of any kind”

I have a hunch that this same kind of technology can be applied to data in healthcare. Reach out to me if you have ideas for how and want to discuss them.

It’s the settlement assurances, stupid

We are still very early in the process of understanding blockchains, both public and private, and Nic Carter is a leading thinker exploring and formalizing this study. The above is a no-BS, wonkish piece on settlement assurances in public blockchains. But, I think this is important work for the private blockchain space too. The stakes are relatively low in the private blockchain implementations right now; no private blockchain is critical infrastructure or has serious economic activity powered on top of it. But if/when that changes there will exist huge incentives to attack these private implementations, and inevitably their security models will be pushed, or even broken. We should start being more thoughtful about security today to preempt that.

a16z’s Jesse Walden uses contract theory to examine blockchain projects

He delineates between “complete” contracts, which are those which are “trust minimizing and require little to no human intervention” (e.g Bitcoin, Ethereum), and and “incomplete” contracts, which have a need for human intervention and some degree of trust (e.g MakerDAO). These have tradeoffs in their ability to adapt and scale, though neither model is inherently better than the other in all situations.

Huawei CEO Calls on China to Create a Rival to Facebook’s Libra Crypto

MetaMask released their long awaited mobile wallet

It is the state of the art in user experience for blockchain projects. Spend a few minutes testing out the on boarding as well as the Venmo-like instant, transaction fee-less payments.