Introduction to Blockchain
Blockchain is defined as a distributed system which can store and record data derived from overall transactions. It is a mechanism which involved in creating immutable and distributable data records of peer to peer transactions generated from linked transactions. A kind of database, it stores information that can be shared publicly and its contents can be accessed with permission.
In the blockchain, every connected member has a dedicated, secret private key and public key, the latter acting as an openly visible identifier. Identification is possible only in one direction using the secret private key. In order to unlock the participant’s identity and to access the respective information on the block chain, you must have the private key.
10 Ways Blockchain Can Improve the Healthcare Industry
Following are the 10 ways by which the healthcare industries will profit by using blockchain:
1. Managing and Sharing Medical Data
Proper management of medical data is very important for a patient’s life and health. Medicals institutes often fail to manage such patient data. Also, no facility is available to share this data among multiple medical institutions in order to build a chain of connected data. Blockchains can be used via hospital management software to safely transfer the patient records from one institution to another. Medical record of the patient can also be shared and recorded locally as well as across the borders. It will ultimately favor the medical institution by easing the transfer of critical information which can save lives of patients. Blockchains also help develop coordination between various institutes and reduce the transaction cost.
2. Accessible to Patients
Sometimes there are cases of claims of false medication, missing vaccinations and information deletion; these scenarios can be easily avoided by using Blockchains. Patients can also access and manage their medical records using hospital management software. These records are stored in the blockchain and, hence, are traceable.
3. Development and Supply Chains of Drugs
In order to keep the medications updated, development and supply of drugs becomes an important part of health institutions. Blockchains can play a critical role in tracking the supply chains of the drugs and can also provide accurate results in terms of development of drugs.
4. Avoiding Frauds
Nowadays, frauds are very common in healthcare departments due to the lack of coordination and interaction between patients and different hospitals. With the help of blockchains, a transparent system of digital ledgers can be developed in order to avoid any kind of fraud. By using this system, transactions will become safer and secure; there will be simplicity in tracking payments and documentation.
Embedding blockchain with the hospital management software can lend an upper hand to the hospitals and other medical institutes in terms fraud prevention and cyber security. It provides a transparent platform to the management department of the hospital for their daily business.
5. Less Paperwork
Blockchains can reduce a lot of paperwork for hospital management. Thousands of patients visit a large hospital on any given day, making it difficult for the staff to manage and store paperwork. Imagine having to maintain accurate paper records of thousands of patients. Therefore, blockchain can be used to record the data digitally. It will be safe, convenient and avoid wastage of paper; also the risk of misplacing any crucial record of the patient will be minimized.
6. Avoiding Errors
Hospital management can become error free after deploying blockchain. There is no doubt that this technology can help in reducing minor errors which can lead to major issues in the system. In the field like medication there is no space for errors as even a minor mistake can lead to death or severe disability of a person. It is not that only administrative departments are prone to errors; omissions are possible at every location of human interface.
Blockchains can provide an error free system in which the crucial records of patients can be saved without errors and duplicity.
7. Making Data Interoperable
There are lot many scenarios where there is a need for sharing the data between doctors and nurses as well as between different hospitals. If the objective is to save a life, it becomes important to share the respective information on time. Blockchain provides a transparent channel to share crucial data, which other personnel can utilize with proper permissions.
Sharing of such information will save critical time in situations where every second matters while treating a patient.
This information can be accessed in a cloud based environment created by the blockchain, and different departments and stakeholders can access the information as and when needed.
By using blockchain, the administrator can grant specific permissions to certain people in order to access the records and information. It authorizes the person to seek information as per their roles in hospital management. Nobody will be able to seek information which is not supposed to be accessed by them as per their allotted roles. Hence, blockchain makes the system safe and secure.
With the help of blockchain, monetary transactions can be made easy and secure. Patients and hospital management can have a transparent system of payments which is well secured. It can help to track the record of payments and receipts. Blockchains are also efficient in making the system safe from hackers.
Blockchains can generate error free insurance reports. This will help to earn the confidence of the patients as lot many times there are cases of inaccurate reports by the healthcare institutions, which results in delayed payment or even non-payment by the insurance company. Patients can cross check the reports which are submitted to them with the help of blockchain.
Using hospital management software embedded with blockchain can simplify the operations of the hospital staff. This system is transparent, cost effective, efficient and saves a lot of time and paper. As mentioned above, it can also protect the entire mechanism from hackers, making it reliable for both patients and hospitals. Transactions are safe and secure via blockchain, which makes this system less vulnerable to any kind of financial loss.