Blockchain: Opportunities for healthcare

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The emergence of blockchain helps redefining digital health. The session brought together European Commission and external experts to talk about the way blockchain could transform healthcare, enabling key stakeholders such as doctors, pharmacists, clinical researchers to gain secure and faster access to electronic medical information. Safer interoperability, seamless exchange of information with reduced costs are among the benefits that will be discussed.

Speakers:

  • Peteris Zilgalvis, Head of Unit DG CONNECT F3 Digital Innovation & Blockchain

Pēteris Zilgalvis is the Head of Unit for Digital Innovation and Blockchain in the Digital Single Market Directorate in DG CONNECT and is the Co-Chair of the European Commission FinTech Task Force. He was the Visiting EU Fellow at St. Antony's College, University of Oxford for 2013-14, where was an Associate of the Political Economy of Financial Markets Programme. From 1997 to 2005, he was Deputy Head of the Bioethics Department of the Council of Europe, in its Directorate General of Legal Affairs.  In addition, he has held various positions in the Latvian civil service (Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Environment). He was Senior Environmental Law Advisor to the World Bank/Russian Federation Environmental Management Project and was Regional Environmental Specialist for the Baltic Countries at the World Bank. He has been a member of the California State Bar since 1991, completed his J.D. at the University of Southern California, his B.A. in Political Science Cum Laude at UCLA, and the High Potentials Leadership Program at Harvard Business School. A recent publication of his is “The Need for an Innovation Principle in Regulatory Impact Assessment: The Case of Finance and Innovation in Europe” in Policy & Internet.

  • Ain Aaviksoo, MD MPH, Chief Medical Officer, Guardtime (Estonia/Switzerland)

Title of the presentation: Data visibility - RWD-based outcomes measurement without data sharing

Prior to this he worked as Undersecretary for E-services and Innovation for Estonian government overseeing the digital transformation and innovation of health care, labour and social matters. Dr Aaviksoo obtained his MD from University of Tartu and MPH from Harvard University. He has earlier work experience as a physician, senior level civil servant, international level consultant on large system transformation and technology adoption in healthcare, health policy researcher, CEO of public policy think-tank Praxis and as a health-tech entrepreneur.
Dr Aaviksoo has published over 20 peer-reviewed articles and contributed into several book chapters on health policy and e-health, he is also regularly presenting as invited keynote speaker on digital services and health care innovation at international events. He is lecturing in various universities on innovation and technology in healthcare. 

  • Edwin Morley-Fletcher, President of Lynkeus, Coordinator of the MyHealthMyData project

Title of the presentation: MyHealthMyData, a blockchain-based project providing privacy-enhancing solutions for data transactions between people, clinical institutions, and industries

Edwin Morley-Fletcher is President of Lynkeus (www.lynkeus.eu) and former Professor of Administration Science within the Faculty of Politics, University of Rome “La Sapienza”.

From 2006 Morley-Fletcher has been leading a number of EU-funded research projects in the area of ICT for Health: Project Manager of the FP6 IP Health-e-Child (2006-2010) and of the FP7 STREP Sim-e-Child (2010-2012), Project Manager of the FP7 IP MD-Paedigree (http://md-paedigree.eu), Co-ordinator of the FP7 STREP Cardioproof (http://cardioproof.eu), co-author of the Roadmap on In Silico Clinical Trials within the FP7 Avicenna CSA (http://avicenna-isct.org). From 2016 to 2018 he was also Co-ordinator of the highly innovative H2020 RIA WhoLoDancE (http://wholodance.eu).

In the last three years, Morley-Fletcher has coordinated the H2020 RIA project MyHealthMyData www.myhealthmydata.eu) , which – according to the final review report issued by the European Commission – “has successfully proven that there is a viable and feasible alternative to centralised data solutions in healthcare”. The project has aimed at providing new solutions for health data sharing by introducing advanced privacy-enhancing technologies based on “bringing the algorithms to the data” with secure computations solutions and in generating synthetic data coupled with differential privacy. MyHealthMyData is a blockchain-based system for health which has exerted the function of a technological, ethical and legal sandbox for testing the feasibility, robustness and meaningfulness of a new privacy paradigm allowing to develop “trust-less trust” to facilitate data transactions between people, hospitals, research centres, and businesses.

  • Mirko de Maldè, Co-chair of INATBA's Healthcare Working Group

Title of the presentation: Blockchain: Opportunities for healthcare 

​​​​​​Mirko has several years of experience in research and innovation in the medical sector, including large EU-funded projects in eHealth, data management, privacy and blockchain in healthcare. Within his activities, Mirko has been focusing on the introduction of novel technologies in the healthcare domain, focusing on the topic of data-driven innovations and relevant ethical, economic, and public policy challenges. Mirko is expert in blockchain-based business model design and implementation and accumulated a deep understanding of the usage of distributed ledger technologies for sorting out complex issues in the healthcare domain, in particular for data access control and exchange and for chronic diseases management.

Background information

This session is part of the CONNECT University Autumn School on Digital Health open for everyone. Check the full programme.