In the midst of digital transformation, the healthcare industry continues to look for new ways to advance research without compromising patient privacy or patient welfare. Doc.com’s innovative approach to healthcare uses blockchain technology to secure patient data while providing free healthcare to all those in its coverage areas. Telemedicine for all may means one step forward into a world where everyone has access to quality healthcare regardless of economic situation or geographic location.
Doc.com Telemedicine Blockchain Platform Overview
Founded in 2012 in Latin America, Doc.com currently provides free telemedicine access to patients throughout the world, including the Americas and Europe, with plans to expand their network further in 2019 and beyond. Their platform connects patients to actual doctors via online web apps. In addition to providing services to patients, Doc.com also keeps treatment data and tracks patterns for use by the medical community as a whole. Patients and healthcare providers receive “payment” in the form of MTC (Medical Token Currency) via Doc.com’s proprietary Doc Token and also in the form of free healthcare services. Patients and healthcare providers can then use Doc.com’s MTC in order to pay for services and for access to data.
Doc.com uses a comprehensive software suite to meet the needs of patients and providers. Key components of the suite include the UME (User Matching Engine, the CDHAIE (Cross-Diagnosis Human-AI Engine), and the SPR (Smart Patient Routing). Together, these three systems help patients to find the right doctor, find the right treatment for the systems using advanced AI, and finally find the right referrals for ongoing treatment options. These software systems allow Doc.com’s platform to respond quickly and efficiently to patient needs. Currently, Doc.com serves several thousand patients each day.
The global healthcare industry stands at a crossroads when it comes to digitization and the value of healthcare. Big data in healthcare, data collected from a useful diversity of sources, holds great value to researchers and to the keepers of that data alike. All too often, this data becomes siloed when it should be shared. On the other side of the equation, patients especially in low-income, high-population areas rarely receive anything in return for the valuable healthcare information they could and should be sharing with the world.
Essentially, Doc.com’s blockchain-based platform seeks to bridge this divide by attaching value to the data that patients share and then charging those who want to access that data. In order to tokenize valuable data, they have created an encrypted database that contains consolidated healthcare statistics without identifying individual patients. Access tokens then give holders the right to access large-volume, encrypted information along with other related services. Blockchain-backed currency allow holders – patients and healthcare providers alike – to share in a wealth of publicly-available knowledge provided by patients within the network, knowledge guaranteed to be accurate without infringing on patient privacy.
Doc.com impacts a range of interested parties with a stake in their platform, from patients to regional governments.
Patients in need of medical assistance can use the Doc.com app several times a month in order to report symptoms and access actual doctors via telemedicine. These consults cost them nothing while offering real-time health assistance. In an age where people all too often turn to WebMD and similar apps for inaccurate self-diagnosis, these free consults can literally save lives.
2. Medical Professionals
Doctors and healthcare partners can also buy into – and receive payment from – Doc.com in exchange for retrieving and sharing information. Information silos continue to be a serious problem for the healthcare industry, where precious data and resources continue to be hoarded in one location despite being desperately needed in another. Doc.com seeks to allow for wider collaboration and sharing of data. Doctors can choose to receive patients via the app, trusting on routing software to efficiently send patients to them. Tokenization then allows for payment in kind, for example data for further research.
3. Third Parties
Another major tier in the Doc.com scheme, a range of healthcare-related entities have a vested interest in the information Doc.com continues to gather. From drug manufacturers to local governments and non-profits, Doc.com cultivate mutually-beneficial partnerships in all the areas it serves. Anyone with a valid interest can purchase and use Doc Tokens for research and related disciplines.
Businesses like Doc.com continue to raise the bar when it comes to healthcare innovation, shaping the path of healthcare for years to come.
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Brennan is a blockchain technical adviser in the healthcare sector and blockchain entrepreneur who has worked on developing proprietary concepts for both artificial intelligence and enterprise blockchain. He is a graduate of Rutgers University School of Health Professions where he earned a M.S. in biomedical informatics.