Long Data at HIMSS 2018
We are just a couple of weeks away from the annual HIMSS conference and I will be looking for trends not on “big data” but “long data”. By that I mean blockchain technology.
HIMSS states “Blockchain is revolutionizing the way health information is managed, decentralizing data collection and management, and increasing data security and transparency.” I agree. I wrote a post recently entitled Death of the Middleman: Healthcare & Blockchain that generated the most feedback I’ve ever gotten from a post. Basically, half the comments stated I was out of my mind and the other half thank me profusely for bringing this to their attention. That reaction underscores my belief that something big is coming. Bigger and more encompassing than quality measures, interoperability, or population management. Something that from a foundational standpoint supports and expands the capability of those critical issues with a paradigm shift. Now and then there is a shift in valence and 1 + 1 = 3. We may be standing at one of those times when the door opens by itself.
At HIMSS I’ll be looking to see who the first blockchain movers are in healthcare technology and what they are thinking. I want to search out those who see true potential and those who don’t. Who is working on real work appropriate uses and who is just riding the wave and spouting static and fluff? I believe we are witnessing the initial arc of a multi-decade trajectory, but we cannot predict how far or how disruptive it will be. Blockchain is poised to impact healthcare in ways such as the pharma supply chain, medical records, reimbursement, clinical research, and a multitude of other ways. At HIMSS I’ll have my eyes open and my ear to the ground. I’ll be on the exhibit floor searching for signs of what is coming.