Wednesday, August 31, 2016

US Health Department Selects 15 Blockchain Research Contest Winners


 HHS, Health and Human Services

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC), a division within the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), has announced the winners of a blockchain research paper contest.

The "Use of Blockchain in Health IT and Health-related Research Challenge", announced last month, solicited white papers that would explore how the technology can be potentially used in healthcare settings.

The ONC said that it received over 70 submissions, and that it ultimately chose just 15 to spotlight.

National coordinator Vindell Washington said in a statement:

    "We are thrilled by the incredible amount of interest in this challenge. While many know about Blockchain technology's uses for digital currency purposes, the challenge submissions show its exciting potential for new, innovative uses in health care."

At the time it announced the contest, HHS indicated that it was weighing blockchain tech as part of a broader push for interoperability in the country's healthcare IT systems. The ONC has been pursuing this line of inquiry for the past several years, releasing a report last October on this goal.

HHS, along with the Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security, are among the major US agencies looking into the technology.

The ONC is set to host a blockchain-focused workshop to be held at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) between 26th and 27th September.

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