Change Healthcare acquires blockchain API startup PokitDok's IP, staff

Change Healthcare said that it is looking to infuse PokitDok's tech into its own blockchain network.
By Dave Muoio
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Change Healthcare — a provider of health IT software that ranges from network data analytics to revenue improvement — announced this morning the acquisition of several key assets from blockchain-focused API startup PokitDok, including its software, IP and employees. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Prior to this, PokitDoc has raised just over $55 million in in funding GIS Strategic Ventures, McKesson Ventures and others. In 2017 the company acquired insurance technology startup Oration, and that same year appointed Extend Health vet Joe Murad as its CEO.

Babyforyou.net.ua has reached out to PokitDok for comment about the API startup’s plans following the selloff, and will update this article with any response.

What’s the impact

Alongside its healthcare API offerings, PokitDok gained recognition over the past couple of years for DokChain, a blockchain transaction network designed for a number of healthcare applications such as EHR and identity verification, automatic adjudication and smart contracts.

As such, Change (in which McKesson also has a hefty stake) said in its announcement that it would be integrating certain PokitDok APIs into its Intelligent Healthcare Network for payers, providers and software vendors. In particular, today’s announcement highlighted the inclusion of PokitDok’s various blockchain capabilities and how they could improve the network’s integrity and efficiency.

"PokitDok's capabilities accelerate the launch of Change Healthcare's API and Services Marketplace, which is designed to address the needs of organizations ranging from innovative healthcare startups to established healthcare entities and large-scale IT companies," Gautam Shah, VP of APIs and marketplaces at Change Healthcare, said in a statement. "The combination of assets, technical talent, and market presence will enable our customers and partners with the tools, community, and expertise to leverage data and technology to create innovative solutions for all parts of the healthcare ecosystem: payers, providers, and consumers."

What’s the trend

Change launched its enterprise-scale blockchain platform in 2017, and earlier this year came to an agreement with analytics software firm TIBCO to build a smart contract system using the technology.

And Change is hardly the only healthcare IT company investing in blockchain — firms large and small are exploring how the technology could impact operations and improve care.

On the record

"This acquisition is about practical innovation to create a more connected, transparent and efficient healthcare system where patients control their own information," Kris Joshi, president and EVP of network solutions at Change Healthcare, said in a statement. "As the leader in blockchain for healthcare and with one of the most extensive open API marketplaces available, with PokitDok we are bringing together synergistic assets and technical expertise for delivering additional capabilities to our customers and accelerated value to digital health markets."

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