One of the main reasons for healthcare providers to turn to blockchain technology is security. An increasing number of healthcare organizations manage health records through digital solutions to improve the efficiency, quality, and transparency of the healthcare system. According to news reports, between the years 2009 and 2017, 176 million patient records have been exposed in data breaches. Though a blockchain is transparent, it does not compromise the privacy of data as it conceals the identity of an individual by way of complex and secure codes which prevents the sensitivity of medical data.
A blockchain is a distributed decentralized ledger which is spread across a network which is shared over a peer-to-peer setup. This means that data exchange happens directly and there is no central authority which controls or manipulates it. A block in a blockchain refers to a collection of data. A blockchain is immutable as it is impossible to change data once it is added to the blockchain. The blocks are linked to form a chain and this is what makes a blockchain so trustworthy. It is this decentralized nature of blockchain, which makes doctors, patients, and healthcare providers to gain access to the same information quickly and safely.
Let us now analyze the top 10 companies applying blockchain in healthcare security.
It is a health-focused global network which leverages blockchain to connect people and businesses. It uses a global health data network platform which enables individuals and businesses to control, access, monetize, and gain insights from health data. It helps in secure management of large amounts of patient data. Its blockchain allows the sale, share, safekeeping, or license of data with script compliance to HIPAA rules. It helps avoid the abuse of prescription drugs. It provides updated information about the healthcare activity of patients.
It is used for securely storing health records and maintaining the integrity of records by establishing a single point of truth. Pharmacists, hospitals, doctors, and laboratories need to ask permission to access a patient’s records Medicalchain helps in secure storage and sharing of electronic health records. The blockchain-based platform protects patient identity and maintains a record of origin. In May 2018, Medicalchain announced the release of its telemedicine platform, ‘MyClinic.com.’ Here, patients can have doctor consultations via video and use ‘MedTokens’ to pay for consultations.
It helps store digital records which can be accessed only by hospitals and healthcare administrators. Physical papers are equipped with special Factom security chips which hold patient information. It is stored as private data and can be accessed only by authorized users. It helps create a medical identity around an individual and solves trust and accuracy problems affordably and practically through the Factom blockchain. A patient’s medical information can be recorded on a blockchain through a portable medical wallet.
Guardtime uses blockchain for cyber security applications. It helps healthcare companies and governments to implement blockchain in their healthcare systems. It bridges the gap between patients, payers, providers, life science companies and regulators by enabling data sharing across multiple stakeholders. It delivers a single truthful version of health records.
This Central-European enterprise creates a participatory and global healthcare ecosystem. Established two years ago, it ensures the security of sensitive medical data, which is free from cybersecurity hacks and breaches. Iryo helps unify health records. Iryo allows to store and share medical history from anywhere in the world.
It is a San Francisco-based blockchain company which uses blockchain technology to improve accountability and traceability combined with IoT systems to supply chains which are critical in healthcare and pharma industries. In the case of vaccines which are sensitive to time and temperature, using a blockchain solution will help speed up logistics, improve product visibility, add transparency, save costs, and minimize discrepancies. MediLedger project which chronicled has partnered with in 2017 aims to prevent counterfeit medicines from entering the supply chain.
It helps people sell DNA information for cryptocurrency tokens. It plans to build a unique blockchain platform which will enable people to share genomic data securely for cryptocurrency in the genomic data market. Genomic data refers to the complete set of DNA, which includes all the genes. EncrypGen launched the My-Gene Chain market in the year 2018. Individual customers can share, secure, and remarket their de-identified genomic data. However, certain experts have warned that the de-identification process would reveal other private data.
8. SimplyVital Health
ConnectingCare is a product of SimplyVital Health which connects different medical providers onto the same platform. This allows viewing of the same data for shared patients. Clinical and financial algorithms which are powered by artificial intelligence offer users with actionable strategic opportunities. It helps conduct patient follow-ups, which lower the duration and cost of care. SimplyVital Health is now working on its second product called HeathNexus, which is a blockchain protocol safety that can be adopted by healthcare.
This French startup uses blockchain technology to fight drug counterfeiting. Drug counterfeiting is a worldwide challenge. As per reports, every year, more than 8,00,000 die due to the consumption of counterfeit drugs. Counterfeit medicine refers to a fake medicine which is contaminated, contain the wrong ingredients, or have the right active ingredients at the wrong dose. Using blockchain technology aids in drug traceability. It allows participants to interact with the supply chain and alert labs in case of fake drugs. Blockpharma developed an app which will control the origins of purchased medication.
10. Coral Health
It is a Canadian enterprise looking to leverage the power of blockchain to make personalized medicine a reality. Coral Health plans to create a platform which helps patients share health records securely with stakeholders. This facilitates a broader application of personalized medicine. The demo of its medical records was released in 2018. Using this, users can add their medical health records, request health habits, and choose the doctors with whom they wish to share their data.
Blockchain is a novel technology which solves certain security issues. Making use of blockchain for enhancing electronic Health Information Exchange (HIE) would aid in faster data exchange across a wide range of healthcare applications which are efficient and cost-effective. With a blockchain, patients can choose to share specific medical data, for a defined period, on an anonymized basis. If built with the correct architecture, blockchains can be used for recording and executing on consent-based patient data sharing. In short, blockchain provides updated information and allows for access on a need-to-know basis. Blockchain is an emerging technology which has the potential to change the way the world functions.