BMJ Global Health
December 2017; volume 2, issue 4
From blockchain technology to global health equity: can cryptocurrencies finance universal health coverage?
Brian M Till, Alexander W Peters, Salim Afshar, John G Meara
November 10, 2017, 2 (4) e000570; DOI: 10.1136/bmjgh-2017-000570
Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies could remake global health financing and usher in an era global health equity and universal health coverage. We outline and provide examples for at least four important ways in which this potential disruption of traditional global health funding mechanisms could occur: universal access to financing through direct transactions without third parties; novel new multilateral financing mechanisms; increased security and reduced fraud and corruption; and the opportunity for open markets for healthcare data that drive discovery and innovation. We see these issues as a paramount to the delivery of healthcare worldwide and relevant for payers and providers of healthcare at state, national and global levels; for government and non-governmental organisations; and for global aid organisations, including the WHO, International Monetary Fund and World Bank Group.