Blockchain is poised to disrupt nearly every industry you can imagine. Beyond its obvious implementations with money (Bitcoin, the first completely digital cryptocurrency, sits at $7875.10 USD at the time of this post), we’ve already seen companies like popular messaging app Kik work toward revolutionizing social networking with the tech. In fact, C-Suite executives everywhere are finding it increasingly difficult to avoid conversations about blockchain, many even acknowledging it as the key to future business growth.
With new decentralized applications (dApps) debuting every day—many of them raising millions in revenue—it’s not difficult to see why so many industries are looking to blockchain tech as the crucial ingredient to revolutionizing core offerings.
MedCredits is one such blockchain-based company.
MedCredits bills itself as the fastest way to a medical diagnosis anytime, anywhere, using blockchain to power a platform that connects patients and doctors worldwide through a decentralized network. MedCredits uses “telemedicine”, a process that involves diagnosing patients from remote locations. Rather than scheduling appointments with your doctor only to sit in a stuffy waiting room for hours before finally being seen, you can check in on the MedCredits app and get diagnosed from the comfort of your own home.
Sounds convenient and interesting. But will it work?
The Block Beat spoke with CEO James Todaro and COO Moshe Praver to dive deeper into MedCredits, and why everyone should be paying attention.
The Block Beat (TBB): We’ve seen a lot of companies that seem to sprinkle crypto on top of a product and deem it “blockchain.” Can you tell me why MedCredits is based on blockchain and why it’s important to the protocol?
James Todaro, CEO (JT): This is a great point. We’ve been in this space for over 3-4 years now. We’ve been invested in cryptocurrency in the times of relative obscurity, and the times of excitement. With the current wave of excitement in blockchain technology, we see many companies where the blockchain doesn’t really solve any problems for that particular service.
The blockchain is essential for MedCredits though.
The only way to create a truly decentralized telemedicine platform with an integrated payment system is with the blockchain. This will allow a free market economy to develop in healthcare giving patients access to healthcare worldwide at a fraction of current prices. We are using ethereum as the base protocol as smart contracts are necessary for automated payments on the platform, decentralized data storage, as well as quality assurance of participating physicians on the platform.
TBB: Who’s on the team — how did you find them and why did you choose them?
Moshe Praver, COO (MP): We carefully selected team members with not only strong backgrounds in medicine, finance or programming but also with extensive experience with blockchain technology. Our team consists of 4 US medical doctors, a trader for a large investment bank on Wall Street and a team of developers. Over 50% of our team has been in the cryptocurrency space since 2014 or earlier.
TBB: Integrating medical data with blockchain sounds like you must need to jump through a lot of legal
hoops. How are you approaching this?
JT: We are working with our attorneys on the legal aspects of the platform.
There is one significant difference between our decentralized platform and other centralized platforms. We are releasing a platform for doctors and patients to interact directly with each other. The MedCredits team does not control these interactions and does not have any special access to patient data.
We also do not store patient data. Only the patients control the key to their data. There will also be disclaimers on the platform for both the doctors and patients to check with their local authorities to ensure use of the platform is legal.
TBB: What differentiates you from competitors in the space (if there are any)?
MP: We are really the only decentralized telemedicine platform. We also have a simple use-case to acquire market share early. Our first application will be in teledermatology—one of the simplest use-cases for the MedCredits platform. Patients will be able to snap a photo, provide a few details, and submit their cases for evaluation. A doctor will be able to respond within minutes or hours with a recommendation. We are also one of the few teams in the healthcare space with multiple medical doctors guiding the development of the platform for the optimal patient and doctor experience.
TBB: I see you’re targeting doctors and patients. What’s the interest look like from users? Can you get me
numbers on this?
MP: For example, in dermatology, it is estimated that nearly 3 billion people globally lack access to dermatologists. We are not only giving patients worldwide the ability to access and interact with doctors, but we are also allowing them to be evaluated for under $10… Far more affordable than other teledermatology or physician office visits which can cost over $100.
TBB: Tell me about the token. What’s it do?
MP: The MEDX token is used for payment on the platform. It is also used for physician verification on the network. Independent nodes will verify physicians on the network such that bad actors will be removed from the network and good actors financially rewarded. For their work, nodes will be compensated by the network in MEDX tokens.
TBB: What’s your plan for your token sale?
MP: We are currently in the seed round of our token sale. MEDX tokens are available for discounted rates at this time for bulk purchases. The Pre-Sale and Public Sale will commence in late January/early February of 2018.
Find out more about MedCredits
Note: A correction has been made to this piece to reflect the following update from MedCredits: “Patients will be responsible for paying doctors with the MedCredits token (MEDX) for any medical recommendations received. Neither the doctors nor the patients will receive payment from the MedCredits team. The idea is to connect patients and doctors directly to exchange medical services (from the doctor) for MEDX tokens (from the patient). From our research into global telemedicine, we anticipate free-market pricing for a dermatological recommendation to be below $10. The MedCredits team, however, will run a trial period following initial launch that will allow patients to receive free recommendations as physician fees will be paid from the MedCredits’ promotional budget.”