If you are not familiar with Bitcoin currency now about 5 years old it may be time to familiarize yourself with this volatile currency increasingly being accepted, now by some physicians as an acceptable form of fee-for-service payment. This lengthy article from Healthcare IT News provides some background as well as the pros and cons to this form of currency for payment, including, in some cases the anonymity it provides over credit card or insurance payments. Over 200,000 hotels through CheapAir.com also now accept Bitcoin including two Las Vegas hotels. Gambling still requires the tried and tested dollar currency but now your doctor may accept other forms of currency for “Payment due at time of services”.
Whether looking to draw attention to their practices, experiment with new technology or simply have a bit of fun with their otherwise dreary financial operations, several American medical professionals are now accepting bitcoins, the Web-based virtual currency, in addition to dollars.
Bitcoin, a peer-to-peer, open-source digital currency network that was first launched five years ago, has been getting a lot of media attention lately – sometimes for dark stories such as those spotlighting its role as the currency of choice for Silk Road, an online black market for illegal drugs that was shut down by the FBI this past October.
But it’s also getting strong positive attention, especially from Internet thought leaders, because the Bitcoin system, which depends on no centralized authority but rather a loosely affiliated community of techies, offers some key breakthroughs in the areas of information exchange – particularly between parties unknown to each other – and digital cryptography.
The legal status of this so-called cryptocurrency is in flux worldwide, as various policymakers, monetary bodies and tax agencies get up to speed on its true ramifications.
Category: General Healthcare News