Signify Health is turning to the blockchain space with its acquisition of PatientBlox, a tech company that helps facilitate contracts and payments in healthcare.
Georgia-based PatientBlox focuses on the value-based care space. Its blockchain technology platform is used to assist with the administrative side of healthcare, including data sharing and value-based payment models. Its primary product, the CuraBlox, automates and scales prospective bundle payments. Its functions include payment distribution, reconciliation and tracking efficiencies.
According to Signify Health’s announcement of the acquisition, PatientBlox’s blockchain technology is designed to capture each health event and put it into a sequence of interactions. The system is then able to “trigger payments” at certain points or milestones.
WHY IT MATTERS
Signify Health said it intends to use PatientBlox’s technology to speed up its prospective provider payment capabilities, as well as expand its foothold in the value-based care space.
“We are excited to enhance our leading value-based payment platform with this first-of-its-kind prospective capability and the greater predictability and accountability that come with it,” Signify CEO Kyle Armbrester said in a statement. “We are already powering the nation’s most innovative payment programs, and this capability opens up significant opportunities to create and support new programs and market entrants.”
THE LARGER TREND
Within the last few years, blockchain technology has made its way into the digital health world. The technology became popular in the space due its ability to make data easy to verify and difficult to falsify.
Recently, the technology has come up in relation to COVID-19 vaccination distribution. IBM’s Mark Treshock explained to MobiHealthNews the potential use cases for the technology in verifying and tracking the vaccines, certifying that patients have the vaccine and keeping track of which patients received which vaccine.
While this may be a new area for Signify Health, the company has been involved in the payer space for some time. In September, it worked with Blue Cross to launch a community-based organization network targeting social determinants of health called CommunityLink.
The company has also shown specific interest in the value-based care area. In 2019, Signify Health merged with Remedy Partners, leading to a platform focused on advancing value-based care by leveraging clinical, behavioral and social data.