Blockchain technology, which emerged as the most dominant new technology for dealing with data in an accessible and secure manner, has made its impact in the healthcare space as well. Many consider that Blockchain technology is likely to have an impactful journey for the healthcare industry.
The most significant impact of the Blockchain technology in the healthcare sector is the way it ensures transparency of data while safeguarding medical data from hacking and other malicious breaching efforts. Here through this blog post, we are going to explain how Blockchain can ensure optimum data transparency. But before that, let us understand what exactly Blockchain technology is and how it works.
What exactly is Blockchain?
Blockchain refers to a distributed database that accommodates data through a network of decentralized blocks. These blocks, where data can only be added and not deleted or tampered, offer maximum protection to data from all sorts of malicious attempts. On the other hand, as the data is stored in a decentralized manner, data can be accessed from different endpoints based on the mutual consensus. As it seems quite obvious, the technology solves two big problems, accessibility, and security of data.
How has Blockchain Emerged as a Transparent Data Solution for Healthcare?
Ever since Blockchain has emerged as the most promising database technology and displayed its capability through the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, the technology became subjected to experiments across industries including banking and finance, enterprise IT, healthcare, and other industries. It continues to grab the attention of many industries across the niches as a unique distributed database technology.
In recent years, Blockchain technology has made a great impact in healthcare institutions, particularly in terms of transparent medical record keeping and data management. Many hospitals are now utilizing Blockchain to improve their medical record-keeping systems.
The decentralized medical record-keeping powered by Blockchain is helping to provide optimum accessibility. This is making it easier to share patient information across hundreds of clinics, hospitals, and diagnostic facilities. On the one hand, this is helping medical institutions to keep data in sync for any time and anywhere access for informed decision making during treatment, and on the other hand, this is tremendously reducing the concerns over the safekeeping of data from the malicious data breaching attempts.
All over the globe, the instances of compromised medical records are steadily increasing as commercially valuable medical data are looked upon as precious treasures for many businesses and industries associated with the healthcare sector. But preventing unauthorized access to medical data is of extreme importance for any healthcare facility to uphold credibility and reputation. This is where the "write-once and delete-never" protocol of Blockchain decentralized ledger can be of great help.
How can Blockchain be the Wind of Change for Healthcare?
We have already seen the key role Blockchain can play in transforming healthcare data accessibility, transparency, and data security. Now, let us look at some practical contexts where this transformative power of Blockchain is most visible.
Faster Claim Settlement
Thanks to the decentralized database of Blockchain that keeps medical records of various facilities in sync and readily accessible, medical insurance claims can now be settled faster than ever before. This will also ensure zero manipulation of medical data for raising false claims and faulty dismissal of claims. The patient data across multiple facilities can be shared and accessed in real-time to keep track of vital information required for settling claims.
No Compromise with Personal Information of Patients
In a healthcare facility, a visiting patient exposes his personal information, including identity, contact details, preferences, and payment or banking information. All this information is of substantial commercial significance for other industries, which is why safeguarding patients' personal data is crucial for the healthcare facilities to establish their credibility and reputation. A decentralized database technology like Blockchain that leaves no scope for unauthorized access or data breaching can play an essential role in this.
Great Aid for Medical Research and Clinical Trials
It takes more than a decade and millions of investment for preparing a drug for a life-threatening disease. The vast majority of this research budget and time is actually spent on the clinical trials that produce vast amounts of medical data in different stages. All such data have a direct impact on the research output looked after by regulatory bodies such as the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
For managing such a huge volume of data while safeguarding them until the research comes to its expected conclusion, Blockchain can be the ideal technology. This technology will also give patients a lot of opportunities to share their health data with the researchers in a secure manner. For more efficient data-centric collaboration to allow the scope of medical research, Blockchain has appeared almost as a godsend solution.
As of now, the performance of Blockchain in the healthcare sector is excellent in terms of efficiency in boosting data accessibility and security. Blockchain allowing meticulous verification of the data leaves no scope for compromise with the integrity of data. As data breaching efforts are increasingly becoming common, Blockchain is of extreme significance to safeguard medical data. On the other hand, utilizing medical data sourced across endpoints and facilities can be accommodated and made accessible for efficient treatment, claim settlement, research, and clinical trials.