Healthcare crypto economics and blockchain models for the future

According to Gerry Gensler, SEC chairman as of 2022, “…the crypto asset class has ballooned…the asset class purportedly is worth about $1.6 trillion, with 77 tokens worth at least $1 billion each and 1,600 with at least a $1 million market capitalization.”  Crypto assets are exciting, but let’s take an industry-specific use case example to see how blockchain might work in healthcare.

In this article we examine one venture that is focused on solving some of the problems of exchanging documents securely in medicine.  Healthcare is a siloed industry with many borders.  A ‘borderless’ approach to medicine could bring many benefits.  Let’s take a look at Medicalchain.

Medicalchain and Blockchain

Michael Arrigo ERISA
Michael Arrigo was trained in crypto economics and blockchain, smart contracts, distributed ledgers, non-fungible tokens (NFTs), fungible tokens, privacy, and valuation methods for initial coin offering (ICO) investments at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  He and his team perform investor diligence on crypto asset, crypto economic and token based ventures and data governance.  Mr. Arrigo and his team publish the Blockchain Healthcare Daily and area active in developing blockchain and cryptoeconomics based solutions for the healthcare industry.   Contact.

Medicalchain’s decentralized platform allows fast, secure, and transparent medical data exchange and usage. It enables a variety of healthcare practitioners, such as doctors, laboratories, pharmacists, hospitals, and insurers, to request access to an individual’s medical records. Interaction with the documents is secure, transparent, and recorded on Medicalchain’s distributed ledger while maintaining the patient’s privacy (Medicalchain SA n.d.).
Medicalchain showcases the solution’s features and provides an overview of how the initiative stores medical information on a blockchain. See Medicalchain’s use of blockchain technology. (Source: https://youtu.be/CsxjlsBYmrI)

What is the business problem that the Medicalchain addresses?

Medicalchain proposes to break through the many siloes in healthcare (we call them ‘borders’), enabling multiple participants in the value chain to view patient data and update it for a fixed period, adding data to a distributed single source for the patient information that is accessible to all members of the care team and the patient’s insurance.

How does Medicalchain make use of blockchain technology?

Medicalchain’s tokens (MedTokens) are issued to create a new blockchain-based healthcare ecosystem. Patients use tokens to pay for their records to be housed on Medicalchain’s private blockchain. Healthcare professionals are rewarded with tokens to remotely review medical information and provide advice or a second opinion on a case. Pharmaceutical and other research companies reward patients with tokens in exchange for accessing their records for research and experimental purposes (Medicalchain SA n.d.).

Is there any evidence that the project is aiming to solve the last mile adoption problem in crypto-economics for healthcare?

No. In fact, its only proof point is in the U.K. health system, which is very different from the U.S.

What choices did the leadership team make regarding a ‘lean canvas’ for the venture (e.g., terms of customer, technology, identity, cost of delivery, and competition of blockchain and tokens in healthcare?

The team has chosen to implement in the U.K., which is a very different ecosystem that the U.S. Because the U.S. healthcare system is so different and complex, a proof of concept in the U.S. would be essential to value the venture’s potential in the world’s largest healthcare market (valued by total expenditures including insurance reimbursements).

What unique features does Medicalchain’s token do have promise for the future?

The Medical chain token allows multiple participants from a patient’s care team to update a single record. As the company’s solution states, “Medicalchain uses blockchain technology to create a user-focused electronic health record whilst maintaining a single true version of the user’s data.”

This concept has appeal since in the U.S., a ‘longitudinal health record’ is the holy grail of medicine, e.g., the ability to view everything about a patient regardless of where they have life events or receive their healthcare, over the entire lifespan of the patient.

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Michael F. Arrigo

Michael Arrigo brings four decades of experience in the software, financial services, and healthcare industries. In 2000, Mr. Arrigo founded No World Borders, a healthcare data, regulations, and economics firm with clients in the pharmaceutical, medical device, hospital, surgical center, physician group, diagnostic imaging, genetic testing, health IT, and health insurance markets. His expertise spans the federal health programs Medicare and Medicaid and private insurance. He advises Medicare Advantage Organizations who provide health insurance under Part C of the Medicare Act. Mr. Arrigo serves as an expert witness regarding medical coding and medical billing, fraud damages, as well as electronic health record software for the U.S. Department of Justice. He has valued well over $1 billion in medical billings in personal injury liens, medical malpractice, insurance fraud cases. The U.S. Court of Appeals considered Mr. Arrigo's opinion regarding loss amounts, vacating, and remanding sentencing in a fraud case. Mr. Arrigo provides expertise in the Medicare Secondary Payer Act, Medicare LCDs, anti-trust litigation, medical intellectual property and trade secrets, HIPAA privacy, health care electronic claim data Standards, physician compensation, Anti-Kickback Statute, Stark law, the Affordable Care Act, False Claims Act, and the ARRA HITECH Act. Arrigo advises investors on merger and acquisition (M&A) diligence in the healthcare industry on transactions cumulatively valued at over $1 billion. Mr. Arrigo spent over ten years in Silicon Valley software firms in roles from Product Manager to CEO. He was product manager for a leading-edge database technology joint venture that became commercialized as Microsoft SQL Server, Vice President of Marketing for a software company when it grew from under $2 million in revenue to a $50 million acquisition by a company now merged into Cincom Systems, hired by private equity investors to serve as Vice President of Marketing for a secure email software company until its acquisition and multi $million investor exit by a company now merged into Axway Software SA (Euronext: AXW.PA), and CEO of one of the first cloud-based billing software companies, licensing its technology to Citrix Systems (NASDAQ: CTXS). Later, before entering the healthcare industry, he joined Fortune 500 company Fidelity National Financial (NYSE: FNF) as a Vice President, overseeing eCommerce solutions for the mortgage banking industry. While serving as a Vice President at Fortune 500 company First American Financial (NYSE: FAF), he oversaw eCommerce and regulatory compliance technology initiatives for top ten mortgage banks and led the Sarbanes Oxley Act Section 302 internal controls IT audit for the company, supporting Section 404 of the Sarbanes Oxley Act. Mr. Arrigo earned his Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Southern California. Before that, he studied computer science, statistics, and economics at the University of California, Irvine. His post-graduate studies include biomedical ethics at Harvard Medical School, biomedical informatics at Stanford Medical School, blockchain and crypto economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and training as a Certified Professional Medical Auditor (CPMA). Mr. Arrigo is qualified to serve as a director due to his experience in healthcare data, regulations, and economics, his leadership roles in software and financial services public companies, and his healthcare M&A diligence and public company regulatory experience. Mr. Arrigo is quoted in The Wall Street Journal, Fortune Magazine, Kaiser Health News, Consumer Affairs, National Public Radio (NPR), NBC News Houston, USA Today / Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Medical Economics, Capitol ForumThe Daily Beast, the Lund Report, Inside Higher Ed, New England Psychologist, and other press and media outlets. He authored a peer-reviewed article regarding clinical documentation quality to support accurate medical coding, billing, and good patient care, published by Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA) and is published in Healthcare IT News.

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