Drexel University, MAPay Team on Healthcare NFTs

Drexel Universitys College of Medicine announced Tuesday (Aug. 2) that it has teamed with global healthcare technology firm MAPay on a payments and data innovation program that uses non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to democratize healthcare data.

The collaboration will develop the technical foundation and market to solve for one of the most debated and contentious healthcare topics: patient data access, according to the press release.

The medical industry has laid the groundwork for a solution to be realized, but they are still dependent upon inefficient, incumbent services to establish patient identity, said Michael Dershem, CEO of MAPay. Provider-to-provider identities are also not readily facilitated in todays health systems, which creates administrative and cost burdens when credentialing providers.

These shortcomings are due to numerous legacy technical and business complexities including, yet not limited to, costs, competition, and privacy issues surrounding industry interoperability.

The MAPay patient data vault NFTs, which use the Algorand blockchain, store verifiable patient information and provide a more complete healthcare history to care teams and health services, per the release.

This initiative will be transformational particularly in underserved areas, said Charles B. Cairns, senior vice president of Medical Affairs and Dean of the College of Medicine. It is not a question of should this be done, it is an answer that it must be done for the future in medicine. Because this touches so many distinct aspects of healthcare, a multi-disciplinary approach is needed.

Meanwhile, recent PYMNTS research shows that nearly half of the companies in the finance, insurance and healthcare industries have accelerated the digitization of payment processes and systems during the pandemic.

Related: Early Adoption of Digitalization Brings Benefits to Finance, Healthcare Sectors Today

Almost half of the companies in each of those industries (48%) fast-tracked payments digitization to improve balance sheets, according to Business Payments Digitization, a PYMNTS and Corcentric collaboration based on a survey of 400 chief financial officers (CFOs) that work at firms with $400 million to $2 billion in annual revenue.

Thirty-nine percent of CFOs in the travel and transportation industry, 36% in retail trade and 19% of those in industrial and manufacturing reported that their companies accelerated the digitization of payment processes and systems.

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