How Blockchain Technology will Change the eHealth Industry

Opinion Article by Michael Krusche, founder and CEO of K&C.
Let's imagine a world where all medical information about a patient is securely kept within a single system, and they can share it with any healthcare professional, without red tape. Until now, such a dream has been impossible. With the help of blockchain, however, all of that will change.

Blockchain was first implemented in the cryptocurrency world as the technology that allowed Bitcoin to operate. Its principles are now applied in many fields and for different purposes.

Current Attitudes Towards Blockchain in the Medical Realm

Healthcare is where the blockchain revolution is just starting to ignite. According to the report IT Innovation Efforts at Hospitals and Health Systems, a whopping 48% of respondents regarded blockchain technology’s potential to be grossly overestimated. They expressed their scepticism in either complete disregard for IT novelties, such as blockchain technology, or choosing risk-averse areas to innovate. In contrast to this negativity, there is a growing group of e-health enthusiasts. When the 200 top healthcare executives were surveyed in 2017, as many as 16% expected to have a commercial blockchain solution already, and 56% expected one by 2020. They plan to partner up with IT vendors, support e-health startups, and bring IT expertise to internal processes.

Yet, figuring out who’s right and whether a blockchain is really a silver bullet is a little more complicated. It has become increasingly difficult to differentiate hype around blockchain from the facts.

Areas Blockchain can Improve

Blockchains are distributed systems that log transaction records on linked blocks and store them on an encrypted digital ledger. In such an industry, blockchain can dramatically improve healthcare by providing a cost-efficient and secure way to manage patient data. When applied to healthcare, the technology can improve the following areas:
  • Supply chain management. In terms of pharmaceutical supply, where counterfeit drugs exist, blockchain can provide a proper ledger to ensure patient safety and logging of pharmaceutical purchases.
  • Billing management. According to healthcare analysts from Frost & SullivanHealth Practice, 5-10% of all medical bills are fabricated. Distributed ledger technology would eliminate the fabrication of medical bills and provide a more sturdy record for medical history.
  • Medical research. The majority of clinical trial records are not properly documented. The blockchain system can improve the situation, providing detailed reporting and transparency of results.
  • Data security. With the help of smart contracts based on blockchain systems, all personal information regarding treatment can be securely saved and handled, eliminating data breaches.

Right Approach Guarantees Success

Uncertainty around the technology has caused concern that poorly developed blockchain technology adopted by healthcare providers can lead to a catastrophe, such as system failure due to becoming a subject to security exploits.

However, as they say, it is a poor craftsman who blames his tools. With the correct approach, it will not take long before blockchain is optimized for the healthcare industry. Here’s what needs to be done to optimize the process for those interested:

  • Setquestions to IT professionals
  • Introduce a blockchain only when it’s completely tested
  • Compare such a new technology to the previous solution

The healthcare industry will benefit hugely from such groundbreaking, advanced technology to help improve its ability to provide the patient care. And it is only a question of time when using blockchain will become mainstream.

About Michael Krusche

Michael Krusche is a founder and CEO of K&C. With more than 20 years of experience in the IT field, Michael has both a passion and reputation for helping grow businesses through digital transformation. One of these areas he is passionate about is the healthcare sector. Michael has created leading IT solutions for healthcare businesses and K&C team is ready to do the same for you today.

https://kruschecompany.com

Most Popular Now

Digital Health Consultancy Expands to Su…

Digital health consultancy Populo Consulting has announced the appointment of a new managing director as part of an ambitious growth strategy. The expansion will enable it to support more NHS...

Alcon to Develop SMART Suite Digital Hea…

Alcon, the global leader in eye care and a division of Novartis, today announced plans to develop the SMART Suite by Alcon, an innovative, digital platform that is designed to...

Stanford, Apple Describe Heart Study wit…

A clinical trial to determine whether a smartwatch app that analyzes pulse-rate data can screen for a heart-rhythm disorder has enrolled more than 400,000 participants. Researchers at Stanford Medicine, in...

The Partnership for Digital Healthis Com…

15 - 16 November 2018, Berlin, Germany. The initiative co-founded by Egon Zehnder and including partners Sanofi, SAP and Qiagen, is one of the most forward-thinking partnerships for promoting innovation in...

With Mobilett Elara Max, Siemens Healthi…

With the presentation of Mobilett Elara Max, Siemens Healthineers is setting new standards in mobile X-ray imaging. The easy-to-clean system surfaces with an antimicrobial coating reduce the risk of hospital...

Augmented Reality may Assist Cardiologis…

Augmented reality (AR), a technology that superimposes computer-generated information on a user's view of the real world, offers a new platform to help physicians better visualize complex medical data, particularly...

Health Tech Communications Agency Takes …

Highland Marketing, a full service marketing communications agency for the health tech and wider public sector markets, has appointed Michelle Cheng as marketing executive to support the business' rapid growth.

IBM to Acquire Red Hat, Completely Chang…

IBM (NYSE:IBM) and Red Hat (NYSE:RHT), the world's leading provider of open source cloud software, announced that the companies have reached a definitive agreement under which IBM will acquire all...

Open Call SC1-DTH-05-2019: Large Scale I…

An ageing population is increasing demand-side pressures on public health and social care providers across Europe. These pressures undermine the long-term sustainability of existing models for delivering care services to...

Robotic Arm may Help to Rehabilitate Chr…

New research published in Frontiers in Neurology finds that robotic arm rehabilitation in chronic stroke patients with aphasia, the loss of ability to understand or express speech, may promote speech...

Breakthrough Neurotechnology for Treatin…

Three paraplegics who sustained cervical spinal cord injuries many years ago are now able to walk with the aid of crutches or a walker thanks to new rehabilitation protocols that...