What Changes can be Expected with Blockchain Entering the Healthcare Arena
With 90 percent of doctors today using electronic patient records, the challenge of unconnected systems of the doctors, leads to endangered patients on a large scale when a ransomware attack targets hospitals.
Also, the breakdown in communication due to the unavailability of the health information leads to patients feeling isolated and unsupported, further leading to health complications more difficult and expensive to treat
Can blockchain be THE Solution?
Although initially developed for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, the decentralized ledger system, blockchain, is highly resistant to cyber attacks since the network has no single point of origin. The fact that every transaction becomes part of the entire network makes it secure. Blockchain’s ability to store massive amounts of data has led to its utilization in several industries, including healthcare.
When it comes to medical research, collecting real-time data and making it available to scientists worldwide enables faster successes and at the same time, the time in duplicating failed experiments is also saved.
While sharing scientific data through blockchain helps in developing cures faster, sharing patient information with the help of the same technology will help prevent chronic diseases.
Apps can be developed where patients who drag themselves for their morning workouts, or quit smoking or swore off fried foods, can be given tangible short-term rewards by their healthcare providers. For every positive step a patient takes, he could be rewarded by the platform with its own form of cryptocurrency.
To sum it all, a healthier patient is cheaper to treat and insure. The pain of having to copy, fax, scan, and wait for medical records from elsewhere can be eliminated, while doctors and their staff can utilize the same time in offering better care. Alongside, medical research companies can, more efficiently recruit participants for their researches, paving the way for bigger medical breakthroughs, with blockchain enabling secure and anonymous sharing of data.