Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies use a highly sophisticated and secure technology known as blockchain. Its decentralized data interface with advanced analytics provides an encrypted and secure storage.
Blockchain technology is not just limited to the area of cryptocurrency.
Every organization strives to provide the highest possible service to its customers. They have to keep reinventing themselves to stay on par with the latest technologies. Healthcare sector and biotech sciences can be revolutionized by the use of Blockchain technology. Many hospitals and healthcare providers still store their entire electronic data in a single location, which makes it vulnerable to ransomware attacks and hacking. Blockchain provides them with a fitting solution.
How does Blockchain work
It is quite the opposite of traditional data storage. Here, data is distributed into ‘blocks’ which are replicated to form a network of highly encrypted ledgers. So, the data is decentralized and each of these ledgers has a private key which can provide access to that particular piece of information.
Data exists in public space but since a private key is required to access a block or ledger, data can only be distributed but cannot be copied. This means that for the data to be corrupted or hacked, all the blocks must be breached at the same time, thus making this technology more secure than what is currently in usage. Also, data can be updated and accessed by anyone at any time using the private key.
Blockchain in Healthcare
For example, a patient’s entire medical history can be updated into the blockchain and when a doctor refers the patient to a specialist, there is no need to send him the patient’s records.
The specialist can simply log in and access information with the patient’s approval. This whole process removes the chance for human error or duplication of records as data once updated is glued together with all the fragments and is accessible to all the users.
Every year, a lot of money is spent across the world to store records of the patients and their service providers. It has to be constantly updated and must be error free. Blockchain technology comes as a cost-effective solution by eliminating the middlemen as it reduces costs by removing third-party applications from the equation. Since data is updated constantly, there is no time-lag and no scope for fraud or medical malpractices. This entire process can be expedited as data management becomes more reliable.
Other healthcare-related uses for Blockchain
Claims process and settlement is the area where medical institutions see most data breaches, misrepresentation and fraudulent information. Insurance frauds can be minimized through the use of complex transactions in Blockchain technology. Medical researchers who collaborate can make use of real-time data processing for their time-stamped data requirements.
Major players in the healthcare sector like UnitedHealthcare, Optum, Quest Diagnostics, and Walmart have already started programs based in blockchain technology, though it is still in nascent stages. The architecture of Blockchain technology can ensure the privacy of the patients.
Since the data is transparent and can be traced with accuracy, there will be no risk of a security breach. In near future, utilization of this technology at its fullest in medical research can guarantee the prevention of diseases and improved health and speedy medical care.
This article was submitted by Phillip Nunn – a thought leader and speaker on Blockchain, Cryptocurrency, and Fintech – follow his blog.