Blockchain in Healthcare
Photo Credit: Silver Touch Technologies
When it comes to Healthcare, all aspects of how it's provided and managed are very personal and confidential.
We all want the best for our family and ourselves when it comes to our health care provider.
Hospital visits or records involving personal data, are expected to be handled appropriately.
This is yet another sector the blockchain community has proposed to manage, placing our medical records on a blockchain.
Healthcare records however, are probaly one of the more sensitive areas of data management, on par or even more so than financial records.
Placing shipping and freight logistics on a blockchain has its benefits, and cost savings.
But losing a package, though it is not sought after, is less important than losing your medical information, either partially or entirely, or to an unwanted recipient.
Several proponents of blockchain hope that it will be the key that unlocks barriers to healthcare data sharing and ultimately enables an industrywide shift to value-based care.
While most experts agree on blockchain's potential to disrupt the industry, they caution that the technology is just one tool of many that could be used to revolutionize certain parts of U.S. healthcare. “It's not a cure-all for what ails the healthcare ecosystem,” said Brian Kalis, managing director of digital health and innovation at Accenture.
Blockchain has not established itself within the healthcare sector, but that does not mean it doesn't have a place within the industry. Here are five ways blockchain could transform healthcare, according to Coin Rivet:
1. Medical data: Because blockchain can be accessed by all users, many are skeptical if it follows HIPAA policies. However, through the technology, physicians and hospitals would be less susceptible to cybersecurity attacks. Providers would be able to more easily and securely share patients' medical histories and update patient records.
2. Patients could own their medical data
Blockchain can also provide patients with full data ownership over their medical records. At the moment, patients don’t have complete control over this data since there’s a risk of losing vital information involving public health.
3. Blockchain in healthcare can introduce smart contracts
One of the strongest use cases for blockchain technology lies in smart contracts. The security of the network makes these digital agreements suitable for any domain, and healthcare is no exception.
If you used smart contracts to buy health insurance, for example, all the details in the policy would be automatically linked to your patient profile, which is already stored on the blockchain.
4. Blockchain can minimize fraud
The UK, for example, loses an average of £5 billion a year due to fraud in the healthcare system. This is mostly caused by a lack of effective communication between medical services providers, patients, and the organisations that pay for the procedures.
5. Technology reduces the need for paperwork
Blockchain in healthcare could reduce the number of paper-based documents required when filing insurance claim forms. Today, patients with private care need to keep receipts and store all medical records, make copies, and send them to the insurance company.
As the above statements suggest, there are benifits to blockchain in Health Care, but also hurdles to overcome.
I expect to see Health Care to be one of the last major sectors to adopt this technology.
Mainly because of regualatory statutes, incumbent perspective and legal fortification, or colossal infrastructure and migration barriers.
Personal freedoms may be at stake as well.
As governments around the world approach Health Care record keeping akin to their view of Autocracy or Democracy.
Parts of this article were originally published by CoinRivet.com. You can read the original article here.