Can Blockchain Technology Improve The Healthcare Industry?
Blockchain technology can improve health care by putting the patient at the center of the system and improving health data security, privacy, and interoperability. By making electronic medical records more streamlined, direct, and safe, this technology could create a new model for health information exchanges (HIE). While this new, fast expanding sector is not a cure-all for everything, it does provide fertile ground for experimentation, investment, and proof-of-concept testing.
Blockchain in healthcare could help alleviate the pain by deflating the present expenditure bubble, protecting patient data, and improving the overall experience. The technology is already being used to perform everything from encrypting medical data to controlling disease outbreaks.
Securing Patient's Data
The most popular blockchain healthcare use right now is keeping our sensitive medical data safe and secure, which is unsurprising. In the healthcare industry, security is a big concern — only Between 2009 and 2017 in the US, data breaches exposed over 176 million patient records. The criminals stole credit card and banking information and health and genomic testing records.
Because blockchain can preserve an incorruptible, decentralized, and transparent log of all patient data, it's ripe for security applications. Furthermore, while blockchain is evident, it is also private, masking each individual's identity via complicated and secure protocols.
Blockchain-based Medical Records Will Reduce Mishaps
The healthcare business loses $11 billion a year due to miscommunication between medical experts. Obtaining access to a patient's medical records takes time, depletes staff resources, and delays patient care. The use of blockchain-based medical records may provide a solution to these problems.
The technology's decentralized structure generates a single ecosystem of patient data that doctors, hospitals, pharmacists, and anybody else involved in treatment may access quickly and efficiently. The blockchain can help to speed up diagnosis and customize care programs in this way.
Medical Supply Chain Management and Drug Traceability & Safety
How much do we truly understand about medicine? Is it possible that it isn't tainted and is pure? Is it coming from a reliable source? The medical supply chain, or the relationship between the lab and the marketplace, is preoccupied with these issues.
The decentralization of blockchain ensures complete transparency in the shipping process, which has severe implications for the pharmaceutical supply chain management. The point of origin will be marked on a drug ledger once it is generated (i.e., a laboratory). The ledger will then record data every step of the way until it reaches the consumer, including who handled it and where it went. The system can also keep track of labor costs.
Catalyze breakthroughs in Genomics
Once a pipe dream, genomics' potential to improve human health is now a scientific and financial reality. A human genome cost $1 billion to process in 2001. DNA tests that reveal clues to our health and background are now available in millions of homes thanks to companies like 23andMe and Ancestry.com.
Because it can safely store billions of genetic data points, blockchain is an ideal fit for this burgeoning business. It's even evolved into a marketplace where people may sell their encrypted genetic data to contribute to a more extensive database, allowing scientists to obtain crucial data more quickly than ever before.
Challenges and considerations in the implementation
Blockchain technology has tremendous applications in health care, but it is not yet fully mature or a panacea that can be used instantly. Before companies across the country can embrace a healthcare blockchain, a number of technical, organizational, and behavioral economics difficulties must be overcome.
Firstly, Blockchain technology is still in the early stages of development. It faces several obstacles that must be overcome before it can be used in biomedical and healthcare applications. Transparency and confidentiality are the first two challenges. On a blockchain network, everyone can see everything. Many people assume that medical data is held off-chain and that a blockchain merely stores the hash of the tag information.
The second issue is that of speed and scalability. Transaction processing speed in proof-of-concept research is estimated to be a few hundredths of traditional methods, such as credit cards. Given the massive volume of transactions in the healthcare industry, a blockchain technology revolution is required.
Will Blockchain affect Healthcare’s future?
Numerous elements of blockchain technology, such as the immutability of data stored in a blockchain, are attracting the interest of the healthcare industry, with many promising applications being considered. Blockchain technology is projected to improve medical record administration and insurance claim processing and speed clinical and biomedical research and advance biomedical and healthcare data ledgers.
These expectations are based on essential features of blockchain technology, including decentralized management, an immutable audit trail, data provenance, robustness, and enhanced security and privacy. The most important innovation that can be accomplished with blockchain technology is retrieving data subjects' rights. There is more to see where blockchain will take the healthcare industry, but it looks like a promising start.