- Kakao Healthcare has been awarded the contract to develop a metaverse healthcare platform.
- The platform is part of the state-backed 2023 Metaverse Pioneer Project in the medical sector.
- In January 2023, Kakao Healthcare invested $7.5 million in the electronic health record provider ezCaretech.
Kakao Healthcare, the digital healthcare subsidiary of the Korean social media giant Kakao has won the bid to develop a metaverse healthcare platform. The platform is part of the government’s initiative to bring personal healthcare management to the digital space.
Dubbed the 2023 Metaverse Pioneer Project in the medical sector, the project was jointly launched by the Ministry of Science and ICT and the National Information and Communications Promotion Agency (NIPA).
According to Kakao Healthcare, the metaverse healthcare platform will expand the scope of the current metaverse healthcare use cases scenarios like hospital promotion, medical knowledge education, and collaboration between medical professionals than for personal health management, to include personalized health management services and provide personalized musculoskeletal and mental health management services.
According to a report by the Korea Economic Daily (KED Global), musculoskeletal disorders caused by repetitive movements or bad posture have been steadily increasing over the years. A study estimated that 17.6 million patients in 2019 accounted for 10% of total medical expenses.
This announcement also comes barely five months after Kakao Healthcare invested in the electronic health record services company ezCaretech to advance its digital health management system.
According to a securities filing on January 18, 2023, Kakao Health bought 448,776 common shares of ezCaretech via a private placement for a total of KRW 9,899,998,560, approximately $7.5 million based on the current exchange rate, to be unlocked within a year.
South Korea has been one of the leading countries in the metaverse and web3 adoption, with most of its entertainment companies including Netmarble, Wemade, Kakao, and NCSOFT already running various blockchain projects, either directly or through a portfolio company.
The 2023 Metaverse Pioneer Project is one of the very first state-backed metaverse projects in the country. Last year, the Korean government pledged $186.7 million to support the advancement of the metaverse in the country.
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