- HHS’ Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology has announced the final winners in its blockchain challenge.
- The challenge called for white papers on the use of blockchain technology to address privacy, security, and scalability challenges in electronic health records and resources. Winners get cash awards ranging from $1,500 to $5,000.
- The 15 winners, selected from more than 70 submissions, were chosen for their potential to impact market viability, improve the flow of health information, nurture transformative change, among other factors.
“We are thrilled by the incredible amount of interest in this challenge,” Vindell Washington, national coordinator for health IT, said in a release. “While many know about blockchain technology’s uses for digital currency purposes, the challenge submissions show its exciting potential for new, innovative uses in health care.”
The organizations with the winning white papers include Accenture, Deloitte Consulting, National Quality Forum, IBM Global Business Service Public Sector, and Mayo Clinic.
The announcement comes as industry interest in blockchain technology is heating up. In April, IBM launched a secure, cloud-based framework to support the use of blockchain in government, financial services, and healthcare. And earlier this month, Humana CEO Bruce Broussard suggested in a LinkedIn post that blockchain could be “the next dramatic innovation in healthcare.”
By decentralizing the way data is stored and distributed, blockchain could prove valuable in preventing ransomware attacks. “With a blockchain, that data is spread across the entire network, so there’s no one point of failure that you can attack,” Micah Winkelspecht, CEO of blockchain startup Gem, told Healthcare Dive.