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MedBlox is reinventing the way we exchange healthcare data

There is no easy way to get a holistic view of your current medical records. It can be nearly impossible to get a complete view of what your medical record is. Todd Chamberlain and Somchai Rice are looking to change that.

In February of this year, the two founded MedBlox, a platform backed by blockchain technology that helps facilitate the ownership of electronic health related (EHR) data between the provider and the patient.

“Our focus from the beginning has been to shift the burden of maintenance and compliance away from the provider and to transfer that ownership of health data to the patient,” Somchai Rice, CSO and co-founder of MedBlox. “We can do this fully, acting as a bridge that connects these information silos.”

Removing the strain of dealing with medical records from providers will allow them to focus on continuity of care, improving quality of life, and will empower patients in active disease prevention.

“There’s a lot of people doing health data exchange,” Todd Chamberlain, CEO and co-founder of MedBlox said. “But we have the added benefit of being able to shift liability outside the walls of the health institutions which they’ve never been able to do before.”

MedBlox’s platform is slated to roll out in the second quarter of 2019.

“We want to be ubiquitous with how health data flows from one organization to another,” Chamberlain said. “Really what we want to see happen is healthcare organizations talking about the information and records they have and really engaging.”

“We’re hoping to capitalize on a fast-moving market. In five years, our hope is to have MedBlox be the framework that healthcare data lives on,” Rice said.

MedBlox is reinventing the way we exchange healthcare data | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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