DAOs May Save Healthcare – Healthcare Blog

by Kim Berard

you may have seen news Kaiser Permanente has signed up as an organizational member of the organization Graphite Health, joins SSM Health, Presbyterian Healthcare Services and Intermountain Healthcare. Graphite Health in case you missed it Announcement in October, is “a member-led company transforming digital healthcare to improve patient outcomes and reduce costs” with a focus on healthcare interoperability.

This is all very encouraging, but I wonder why it’s not a DAO. In fact, I wonder why there aren’t more DAOs in healthcare in general.

For those who haven’t jumped on the Web3/crypto bandwagon, the DAO is a “decentralized autonomous organization”.telegraph definition A DAO is “an internet-native organization collectively owned and managed by its members…decisions are made through proposals that are voted on by the group for a specified period of time.” No hierarchy – decisions are made “bottom-up” – They are designed to operate through blockchain-powered smart contracts.

Cointelegraph went on to explain:

A significant advantage of DAOs is the lack of trust between the two parties. While traditional organizations need a high degree of trust in the people behind the DAO (especially on behalf of investors), only the code needs to be trusted.

Trusting the code is easier to do because it’s publicly available and can be extensively tested before release. Every action taken after the DAO is launched must be approved by the community and be fully transparent and verifiable.

I talked about DAOs in an article Previous article on Web3.

Graphite Health seeks to create “a standardized, interoperable data platform that enables secure and open marketplaces to simplify the distribution of digital health solutions for health systems and entrepreneurs.” CEO Dr. Ries Robinson Say“Currently, when a hospital wants to adopt a new innovative solution, it is hindered by overly burdensome processes that can take years to implement.” “

Dan Liljenquist, Graphite Health Board Member and Intermountain SVP/Chief Strategy Officer, added:

Graphite Health isn’t just a new startup, it represents a new approach to our long-standing national problem: healthcare is too expensive and inconvenient. By adopting a collective membership approach and committed to our Digital Hippocratic Oath, we will ensure that patients are treated as people rather than products.

Kaiser’s announcement specifically praised Graphite Health’s “focus on trust and transparency.”

Let’s see: it wants to simplify innovative digital solutions, represents a new approach to problem solving, focuses on trust and transparency, and employs a collective membership approach. If this doesn’t sound like a DAO’s job, then I’m misunderstanding their purpose.

Graphite Health did solve a big problem in healthcare – the lack of interoperability of health records – but instead of ensuring that ownership and control of patient records belonged to the patient, they created a new set of four very large An organization overseen by a healthcare organization. I don’t question the motives of the executives involved and believe they tried something different, but this approach doesn’t remove the kind of hierarchy we’ve seen in healthcare for decades.

Graphite Health Credits Civic Rx as inspiration because it uses health utility model Work to improve the availability and cost of prescription drugs. The model has four principles:

  1. No one will own this company.
  2. Everyone will be charged the same price and there will be no special offers.
  3. The company decided to grow bigger and bigger.
  4. Buyers of the product will become investors in the company.

Again, this is all very noble, but compared to a DAO with its decentralized decision-making and inclusiveness of all stakeholders, it doesn’t seem as innovative as it should be. It’s still the business owner who’s running the show.

When Cointelegraph Say In a DAO, “decisions are bottom-up; one member collectively owns the organization,” and when it comes to healthcare data and data standards, I hope those members aren’t large healthcare organizations. Isn’t that how we got to where we are now?


This should be the time to try something really different. Joan Westberg, write on next network, discusses how Web3/DAO can be a “blessing” for the music industry. Peer-to-peer file transfers and streaming have wreaked havoc on the industry’s revenue, especially for musicians, over the past 20+ years, but “the founders and CEOs of world music companies make more money than any top company. Lots of musicians.”

“For the music industry to thrive in the future, it needs to find a way to distribute revenue to properly incentivize all players in the ecosystem, from artists and fans to technologists and investors,” she believes.

Ms. Westenberg believes this approach might be a DAO:

The DAO will allow artists, consumers, and other stakeholders to communicate directly with each other without the need for third-party intermediaries.

DAOs can help correct imbalances in the music industry, giving artists a direct say in how their work is distributed and consumed, giving audiences a direct connection to the musicians they support, and giving infrastructure layers such as management and labels the opportunity to interact with They collaborate on core demographics and get closer than ever to music itself.

DAOs can be used to distribute profits more fairly within the music industry.

Whether it’s music or healthcare, the most money is made when you get the wrong people – CEOs and other executives – consumers feel they are paying too much and have too little input/control, the people who do the actual work Feeling undervalued, nobody fully trusts each other, everything is taking too long, it’s time to look for a completely different solution.

Just like DAOs.

For example, Dave Chase believed his Healthy Rosetta The project will be a “DAOs within DAOs, including community-owned health plans, calling for “#DeHealth (ie Decentralized Health)”


As far as I know, there aren’t any DAOs in healthcare yet. I’m not entirely sure how many successful DAOs there are in the world. We certainly haven’t solved all the problems in blockchain, nor have we proven the validity of smart contracts at scale. I admit all this.

But I’m clear on one thing: We’re not going to solve the problems of healthcare by using the methods we’ve been using, run by the same entities that’ve been running healthcare. So yes: if we want innovative approaches in healthcare, we should try DAOs.

Kim was the former head of e-marketing for the Blues major program, the late and lamented editor tincture.io, now a regular THCB contributor

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