An AMEinfo exclusive
This is a story of two doctors, who are no longer practicing. They so loved their professions that they decided to shift their focus from saving the lives of hundreds, had they stayed as medical practitioners, to saving potentially millions of people, by quitting.
Some 9 years after discovering something was terribly wrong with the medical sector, three years from founding Aimedis, they are now ready to break open vaults of hidden or unused medical data, and unleash research that could raise money to democratize healthcare across the globe, create revenue streams, and save lives.
To achieve that, Aimedis just launched the first B2B medical and scientific Non-Fungible Token (NFT) marketplace during their participation at Gitex 2021.
Not quite a medical breakthrough, though it may lead to one, but a stunning medical project, nonetheless. And it all started with a problem.
What was the problem?
Let’s first meet these two entrepreneurs with whom AMEinfo held an exclusive interview, and know more about the company they founded.
Dr. Michael J. Kaldasch, medical doctor, is the CEO and co-founder of Aimedis. He has 12 years of clinical experience in internal medicine, neurology, industry consulting, and pharmaceutical industry.
Dr. Ben El Idrissi, medical doctor, is the COO and co-founder of Aimedis. He also has 12 years of clinical experience in neurology, internal medicine, and pharmaceutical industry.
Aimedis, is a blockchain-, AI-, and IoT-enabled e-healthcare platform headquartered in the UAE with offices in the Netherlands and the Philippines.
Founded in 2017 but launched in 2020 as a result of the need for affordable effective healthcare, the Aimedis ecosystem includes a patient-centered platform, a professional platform, a social network, e-labs, and others, and the soon-to-be launched e-pharmacy and Aimedis Virtual Hospital.
“Working in hospitals, the ER, or ICUs, we always got in touch with patients we didn’t know, or haven’t seen before. We needed vital information on allergies, pre-conditions, current medications, and others, but most of the time it was unavailable or what we had simply wasn’t the latest data on the patient,” Dr. Michael described.
Dr. Ben added that he once witnessed a patient who experienced a life-threatening allergic reaction to medication and that incident made it clear something had to be done.
“We looked for a technical solution that should have existed for that, but there wasn’t any at the time, after which we decided to build something that fulfilled that need,” Dr. Michael added.
The two created a crude early solution they called Healthnet, which enabled creating more accurate databases on patients before they receive treatment or get operated on.
“It worked very well but it wasn’t a real company product yet. Armed with entrepreneurial know-how, having always dabbled with ideas in parallel to our work, we at some point decided to go full time into this. 2020 was the last year we worked any medical shift,” Dr. Ben stated.
For the purpose of this story, we will look at three areas Aimedis is focusing on for the short to mid-term.
Focus no.1: NFT marketplace
Dr. Ben stated: “We believe every human being deserves access to a proper, safe, and up-to-date medical treatment wherever they are. We (thus) created a platform that can store, transfer and validate various medical data, connect to medical devices and even provide remote supervisions to medical professionals, institutions and other patients.”
The world’s first medical and scientific B2B NFT marketplace, Aimedis DataXChange, will include a combination of DeFi, governance, social, payment, and utility token (AIMX).
“This will finally mainstream and standardize the process of monetizing medical and scientific data, expanding this multi-trillion-dollar market,” according to Dr. Ben.
The Aimedis entrepreneurs see great financial rewards for themselves and others, but mankind stands to benefit greatly as well.
The NFT opportunity
Until today, medical and scientific data was hard to monetize due to non-standardized data collection processes. Errors occurred frequently, while data was entered and copied, and in the absence of a data transfer chain, data was manipulated, lost, or both.
“As doctors, we dealt with pharma companies who spend billions of dollars on research most of which goes unused. You have queries from doctors, paper sheets with coffee spots on them, and lots of invaluable data that eventually collects dust,” Dr. Michael said.
“We need a way of having reliable, incorruptible data that has been anonymized, can be followed up every single time, and that’s where the NFTs come in.”
Dr. Michael revealed that Aimedis already has a partner with whom it will do its first research trial this year; a breast cancer study involving multiple centers and countries.
“It will be the first therapeutic trial and will be the first minted B2B medical NFT,” he added.
So where is the opportunity?
“The collected data has a certain structure, can be indexed and searched, and everyone can participate in gathering it including doctors, medical centers, pharmas, and more,” Dr. Michael described.
Minted NFTs can be connected to an e-wallet or other payment solutions, and whoever owns them can either trade them, using AIMX, or finance medical trials that have never been done before, as doing so would have required billions of dollars.
“Each piece of anonymous data that we have gathered is valuable for pharma, hospitals, research centers, and even governments, enabling them to explore unchallenged diseases and medical conditions and generate serious money from it,” Dr. Michael said.
Only accredited medical institutions can mint the NFTs and this is to ensure data legitimacy and avoid having regular people mint for the sake of making a quick buck.
Hospitals or medical research institutions are always searching for new revenue streams to finance trials or make other structural investments, and “third world countries looking to invest in vaccination or other treatments for their children, can get the minted medical data NFT and earn money with it or share homegrown data in the form of NFTs and sell it,” said Dr. Michael.
“Many huge medical companies in different specializations are sitting on stacks of data that are massively important, and a growing number of companies are offering a service to evaluate that data. We are mirroring this process using NFTs,” Dr. Ben added.
At Gitex, Aimedis launched their Initial DEX (Decentralized exchange) Offering (or IDO) powered by Binance Smartchain and which is followed by a public sale on Pankcakeswap.
Aimedis offered 60,000,000 AIMX tokens in both its private and public sale out of a total of 600,000,000 AIMX tokens. The launch price per AIMX token was $0.05.
“The future price of AIMX token is not easy to predict, although we hope it to be around $1 within 12 months. The price will depend on its usage including when minting, selling, and buying Aimedis NFTs, but also for medical services when used as a payment utility token having a governance function, and a social function with the medical network,” Dr. Michael explained.
“We also burn tokens at a certain rate and this makes it a deflationary token, i.e. lowers its supply as time goes by, and appreciates its value.”
The blockchain technology Aimedis uses supports trust and credibility of information, ensures against data loss, and paves the way for smart contracts to take place, not only between token traders but also for use by patients.
“One of the most important smart contracts on the blockchain is the transaction one that takes place every time something is changed, or someone uploads a new thing to the patient’s account and medical files, which the patient can easily track without prior knowledge of blockchain. The technology all happens in the background.” Dr. Michael said.
“Other smart contracts have to do with prescriptions, appointments, organ donor paths, vaccination, and so on.”
Aimedis as data providers
According to Dr. Ben, the platform gathers a lot of information, and being powered by AI and ML, it is in a position to provide data solutions.
“Research could be done if we have good quality and quantity of data. Our platform is doing that. We have Apple Watch and other wearables sending us IoT data that can be evaluated and lead to more precise patient medical protocols,” Dr. Ben revealed.
“We are also working on a ‘medication interaction tracker’. More than 5000 drugs come up every year. If your cardiologist prescribes one drug and you then a trip to a urologist necessitates another medication, there are interactions that occur between these drugs. These are things for AI to better track, evaluate, and program.”
Dr. Ben said that such information can be for internal use but that it was also resalable.
“We will have anonymized data that can be released, and we are into discussions with pharmaceutical companies to define the data packages and sizes.
Focus no. 2- Virtual hospital
Aimedis aims to centralize hospitals’ information systems (HISs) under one roof, as the platform not only replaces legacy systems that are antiquated and user-unfriendly but also provides digital pathways beneficial to all stakeholders in the medical value chain.
“The challenge has been to convince hospitals to transfer their data, as they all have HISs already running. Our approach was to create an API to exchange the main data needed between their system and ours, in one click,” Dr. Ben said.
“We started out with APIs, but hospitals advised us to create our own HIS, make it accessible to them, and allowing them to modify it and cater it for their own needs, and so we did, and we now offer a customizable HIS that the hospital can use and stack their information over ours, but also add certain functionalities, marketing material, and branding.”
Focus no.3- Virtual rehab
Related to the company’s virtual hospital plans is a virtual rehab center focusing on neurorehabilitation, for now.
“During COVID, many patients had problems getting treatment, not only psychological, but also with home exercise, training material, videos, communications with patients, and so on. Our virtual rehab works best with people who are mobile, and not in an advanced stage,” Dr. Michael said.
“We will be hiring the professionals that do this and also contract third parties such as the hospitals themselves. We have in-house doctors, including surgeons, physiologists, internal medicine practitioners, neurologists, gynecologists, and others to do these consultations.”
Getting into the medical profession takes great dedication and sacrifice. To find cures, these doctors did the unthinkable. They had to get out of it.
It may be just what the doctor ordered for all of us.