USA – Blockchain technology has started permeating industries handling voluminous data, where accuracy is paramount and the presence of error can result in severe damages.
Blockchain debut was in the banking industry. However, like the banking industry, healthcare industry is another sensitive area where zero error is required.
The healthcare sector is currently plagued with inefficiencies, lack of accuracy, and high administrative costs.
The blockchain is a decentralized system that records, stores, and maintains transactional or historical records across a peer-to-peer network of personal computers known as nodes.
The blockchain is already gaining traction in the healthcare industry. Indeed, 40 percent of health executives rank blockchain as one of their top five priorities.
Furthermore, according to BIS Research, the global healthcare market spend on blockchain is expected to reach US$5.61 billion by 2025.
Adoption of blockchain technology could save the healthcare industry up to US$100-US$150 billion per year by 2025 in data breach-related costs, IT costs, operations costs, support function costs, and personnel costs, as well as by reducing fraud and counterfeit products.
Accordingly, blockchain is on the verge of revolutionizing this industry through its decentralized principles and transparency-based operation.
The ability of blockchain to maintain an incorruptible, decentralized, and transparent log of all patient data makes it a technology ripe for security applications.
Given that the healthcare industry is awash with concerns about security breaches almost on a daily basis, incorporating a technology that promises to close all loopholes is a no-brainer.
More than 176 million patient records were exposed in data breaches between 2009 and 2017.
Healthcare start-ups in this day and age of health data insecurity should seriously consider blockchain considering that it has a wide range of applications and uses.
The ledger technology enables the secure transfer of patient medical records, manages the medicine supply chain, and assists healthcare researchers in deciphering genetic code.
In the near future, the United States expects to spend 20% of its GDP on healthcare. If that statistic isn’t shocking enough, consider that the industry is still plagued by skyrocketing hospital costs, inefficient practices, and frequent data breaches.
Blockchain in healthcare may help alleviate this pain by deflating the current spending bubble, protecting patient data, and improving overall experience.
These expensive issues are driving a push for greater efficiency and innovation And at least one country sees blockchain healthcare as having great potential: Estonia.
In 2012, Estonia started using blockchain technology to secure healthcare data and process transactions. All healthcare billing in the country is now handled on a blockchain, 95 percent of health information is ledger-based, and 99 percent of all prescription information is digital.
Dubbed one of the most secure technologies known to man, the technology is already being used to do everything from securely encrypting patient data in m-health to managing disease outbreaks.