The healthcare industry is facing some serious challenges. Blockchain healthcare solutions could help the industry to create efficiency, and avoid problems. Unlike many other modern industries, healthcare has been slow to adopt new technology.
Over the last decade, there has been a push to move over to Electronic Healthcare Records (EHRs). There have been numerous problems with the adoption of EHRs. Many doctors say that the need to manually enter data is causing burnout.
John Prunskis, a medical doctor told MD magazine that he and his staff dislike using EHRs. He said that, “There might be 8, 9 pages or more on something you could categorize in 2 or 3 pages…It’s numbing, mind numbing. It’s ream after ream of popup screens and running data.”
The solution to the problem could be more data gathering with a blockchain healthcare platform. Instead of gathering and entering data manually, the doctors could use automatic sensors that record vital stats in a blockchain-based system. There would be no way to tamper with the raw data, but the final EHR could be reviewed by a doctor.
Blockchain Healthcare Platforms Could Boost Efficiency
We might associate a computer virus with inconvenience, but it is really a matter of lost money. When the UK’s National Healthcare Service (NHS) was the victim of the ‘WannaCry‘ virus in 2017, the NHS’s services were severely affected.
A blockchain-based healthcare records platform could help large healthcare providers cope with computer viruses. Blockchain is great because it is easy to spread data over an entire network, which would reduce the possibility of a system-wide shutdown.
Blockchain-based EMRs could also help patients to access their medical data, even if they are far away from their regular healthcare provider. Even though a person technically ‘owns’ their medical data, it can be hard to gain access to it quickly. A blockchain EMR platform could act as a ‘clearinghouse’ for medical data, and deliver it to its owner in seconds.
The upside to instantly accessible medical data is that doctors anywhere could have accurate medical records, even if it was the first time they treated a patient.
Keeping Track of The Drugs
Pharmaceuticals are a very special kind of product. Most of them need to be kept in specific conditions, and they are all subject to an expiration date. Blockchain has already shown that it is a viable solution for tracking products, and it could the right technology to create a national pharmaceutical tracking system with.
Blockchain can be used in concert with other technologies like RFID and GPS tracking, as well as temperature and humidity sensors. The end result would be a comprehensive database of every prescription drug in the system, which would allow pharmacists and consumers to know that their medicines are effective.
There is also a thriving market for counterfeit pharmaceuticals, which is a very dangerous trend. Accurate tracking systems would help to combat this nefarious trade, and allow people globally to know they are getting the quality they are paying for.
New Ideas for Healthcare
The global healthcare space needs to embrace new ideas to improve the quality of care and lower prices. Many Western nations are struggling to ensure quality of care, with many people in nations like the USA finding affordable care out of reach.
Blockchain isn’t going to be a magic solution for everything that is wrong with the healthcare industry, but it can help to make records easier to create and access. Blockchain is also a better storage system for just about any industry, healthcare included.
The blockchain platforms that have been created for global logistics could be repurposed to work in other industries, for example; pharmaceutical tracking. Blockchain is a new technology, and we are probably at the beginning of seeing some big changes in how data is organized.