Integration Of Blockchain Technology in Healthcare
Blockchain technology has become trendy in the tech industry, and its usage can be seen across various global industries, including healthcare. In technical term, it is an open spread ledger that comes with the ability to record transactions between two involved parties. A user can utilize the Blockchain in healthcare to facilitate digital payments and cyber-security, to keep records and manage patients’ data and electronic health records and more.
The use of Blockchain in healthcare can bring significant changes in all the associated factors and challenges like data ownership, storage capacity, cost and advanced security measures can be addressed with future development.
In this blog, we will focus on the benefits of using Blockchain technology in healthcare, its potential and challenges.
Current Scenario and Possibility
Blockchain technology in the healthcare industry helps medical institutions including clinics, hospitals and medical colleges to store and manage medical information, patients’ data and the records of inventions on the chain of connected blocks securely.
This technology can eliminate the fear of data misuse in healthcare, as its unique data storing pattern ensures the utmost safety of the stored data. Despite having a fear of data theft or misuse, most of the healthcare organizations across the world have not integrated Blockchain applications into their system.
Breach in cybersecurity in the healthcare industry in the USA cost nearly $400 per record, and the worst part is that more than 40% of data recorded by healthcare organizations have errors and irrelevant or misleading information. Apart from this, more than half of medical cases in the USA are unregistered.
The implantation of the right technology can change this scenario. Blockchain and healthcare can work together to bring efficiency in data management and cybersecurity protocol.
How the Healthcare Industry Is Getting Benefited from Blockchain Technology
Blockchain technology is an advanced solution to secure data extracted by a healthcare organization. The technology helps an organization to prevent unauthorized access to valuable data. Besides, a user can establish a shared stream of data comprising patients’ information.
The innovative technology can facilitate the complicated billing process by eliminating the involvement of inefficient or backdated tools, technology and third parties. Along with this, the technology can help patients to upload medical records and let the authorized parties access them.
Let Us Know What Doctors Say
Like healthcare organizations, individual doctors can also be benefited from this smart new-age technology. Millions of doctors and medical specialists around the world are suffering from weak and inefficient healthcare coordination challenges.
In the United States, more than 70% of physicians admit that the data of patients they receive from other doctors are not satisfactory. Miscommunication and poor coordination is a serious error in the medical sector. Blockchain technology has the potential to improve communication and coordination between doctors, patients and organizations. The technology has the potential to make healthcare more accessible, accurate, affordable and user-friendly.
Blockchain Use Cases in Healthcare
Many healthcare Blockchain companies are working to improve operations and services for the welfare of doctors, medical staff and patients. MIT Media Lab, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s MedRec 2.0 project has helped it to make operations service more transparent and efficient.
The Taipei Medical University, Digital Treasury Corporation’s service and information can be accessed through the website of phrOS. The U.S. Department of Defence, U.S. Defence Logistics Agency is exploring the potential of Blockchain technology to make its operations and services more efficient. The FarmaTrust progress report said that an ICO had been designed and developed and their token has been listed on Liquid.
Future of Blockchain in Healthcare
Thousands of healthcare organizations around the world are suffering from mishandled data, mismanagement, miscommunication, poor coordination, error in billings and patients’ records and many such malfunctions.
Blockchain technology is quite promising when it comes to storing and managing medical data, eliminating errors, preventing security breaches, improving interoperability, tracking prescriptions and drugs, monitoring supply chains, streamlining services and more.
Approach and Process of Integration and Development
Blockchain comes with a wide array of applications designed to serve healthcare industries. The ledger technology makes it easy for an organization to store, manage, share and transfer medical records.
Blockchain technology in healthcare helps organizations or professionals to develop a steady and reliable rule-based process. The integration of Blockchain technology allows developers to design and develop applications for the healthcare industry to facilitate operational and management activities.
What Other Health Industry Leaders Are Saying About This Technology
Many health industry leaders have highlighted the positive effect of Blockchain technology, while some have focused on the challenges and the possibility of the security breach. When talking about whether Blockchain will be able to save the healthcare system, Kyle Culver, Humana Lead Enterprise Architect said in 2017 that Blockchain technology works best in scenarios where more than one parties are involved. He said that “When we talk about healthcare today, we talk about the silos a lot—the silos of data and the barriers for exchanging information.”
Likewise, Mike Jacobs, the senior distinguished engineer at Optum said that “multiple people looking at the same information, the quality of that information should go up and operational costs for the provider and the payers should go down because there’s less-frequent contact being done between those two stakeholders. And because the quality goes up there should be a better experience for the patient,”
When talking on the same issue, Humana CEO Bruce Broussard wrote a post in LinkedIn saying – Blockchain would “be the next dramatic innovation in healthcare.” Similarly, CEO of the Hashed Health, John Bass said “the year where we are starting to understand which use cases can be solved now and which will take more time,” Nashville-based company Hashed Health was among the first companies to design and develop Blockchain solutions for healthcare industries.
Blockchain technology has been developed to facilitate the operation and management of public health, data management and security, claim processing, generation of patients’ data, secured data sharing and access and many other activities. However, data ownership, storage capacity and cost are some of the key challenges for Blockchain in healthcare and developers are working to address the issues to make Blockchain the most efficient digital technology in the healthcare industry.