Last  weekend Eelke and I participated in the largest blockchain hackathon of  the world: Blockchaingers in Groningen, The Netherlands. Our team,  HealthUnchained, focused on solving a specific use case brought forward  by the geriatric department of the UMC Groningen. UMCG is seeking a  blockchain solution that empowers healthcare professionals to cooperate  in a trusted environment. The power of blockchain can deliver such  solution, which enables a wide range of organizations to work together,  efficiently as well as securely.

While  it was a complex case, our business analysts quickly figured out where  the business value resided. After these initial considerations we took  the remainder of the 48 hours to create a prototype that was comprised  of three separate applications.

  1. A  timeline application for all professionals and non-professionals  involved in the care for a patient at home, adjusting information based  on the role of the person viewing the timeline. Additionally, we made it  possible for informal caretakers, the only participants without a third  party application, to add comments and questions to the timeline as  well.
  2. A  blockchain application storing references to data from third party  applications and measurements of sensor data. We decided to only store  references to data to ensure we can be privacy and healthcare  legislation compliant as patient data is clearly confidential and  private information.
  3. An  API, connecting the blockchain references to a NoSQL database and  providing a single interface to interact with our application timeline  and enabling third party applications and measurement devices to enrich  our timeline.
Eelke increasing code quality by one point exactly ;)

Moreover  we set up a role-based permission system that enables the patient to control who has access to which data, thus creating a curated timeline  for every healthcare professional working with the patient.

This  being the largest blockchain hackathon in the world, we did not stop  there. As the architecture design shows, we decided to hook up some  sensors and see if we could integrate a basic alarm system. After we  managed to create alarms both on the open timeline and relay them  through messaging services to the appropriate clinician, our time was up  and we had to present our solution to the judges. And not without any  result as the title claims!

UMCG  chose our solution as the runner up in the health track. The winner of  the health track focused on a different problem, so for all we care we  made the best solution for the case presented by the UMCG.

Although  we received a lot of praise for this idea, we also learned some very  important lessons. First, your team members can make it or break it  during a hackathon. Also, it is essential to bring a skilled UI/UX  developer to these events as a well-designed interface can make or break  your chances. (P.S. If you are one of these people, make sure to send  us a message!) Finally, as I have told you guys before, VueJS is  awesome!

We  ended up receiving invitations from multiple organizations interested  in our approach. Stay tuned to our blog and medium to learn more about  our plans to scale up this business opportunity in the upcoming 100  days.

That  leaves me with thanking all the team members involved in a great  weekend and a cool journey into the world of healthcare and blockchain  technology. Thank you Blockchaingers and thank you team  HealthUnchained!!