Blockchain technology has attracted a lot of attention to trade and investment, but its full potential has not yet been realized in the healthcare industry. Blockchain technology comes with the demand for revolutionary and evolutionary changes that have not yet taken effect in the healthcare sector. High quality care is the objective of healthcare facilities with the added benefit of affordable costs leading to patient-centered service delivery.
Blockchain technology refers to a list of linked digital records. Each record is stored after verification by each network participant based on predetermined rules. It provides industries with the advantage of making processes more efficient while removing middlemen. It also makes it possible to collect, store and analyze massive amounts of data. In the healthcare industry, this means that patients’ data will not only be permanently available, but accessible only to trusted and authorized people. While information can be added to data, it is impossible to delete or copy.
The application of blockchain also brings other benefits to the healthcare industry.
Biopharmaceutical companies can use blockchain to monitor and track products. The other bits of information included with the flow of products are some biologics. For example, sensors used in shipments to monitor the temperature of products transmit the data to the blockchain, which helps protect against substandard or counterfeit products. Biopharma manufacturers have also benefited from blockchain by recording and recording interactions with regulators.
Another benefit of blockchain technology for the healthcare industry is making it possible for companies to share information generated from clinical trials. Data regarding adverse reactions and patient demographics may be shared with regulators and sponsors. This system can simplify the speed at which consent is tracked and managed across multiple sites, protocols and systems.
Through blockchain, it is also possible to ensure that insurance claims are accurate, while preventing fraudulent claims, which is especially important in Medicaid and Medicare where payments take place between payers, federal governments, providers and banks. The technology allows creating a smart contract that shows proof of decision.
The industry is moving from the blockchain frenzy to the reality of the change and opportunities it can create. Full adoption of blockchain is recommended for healthcare stakeholders, as it may not benefit the few organizations that invest in it in isolation. Changes and changes may take longer to take root, but they are well worth the effort in the long run.