Everything we know about health care can benefit from blockchain technology. Especially when it comes to medical records, sharing patient information, and making data more interoperable. Right now, there are a lot of intermediaries involved in sharing patient data as very few systems are compatible with one another. The blockchain will effectively create a new model for the exchange of health information. Electronic records are the way forward. However, they need to be made more efficient, secure, and no longer reliant on intermediaries.
Overcoming all of those challenges will not be easy, though. A blockchain-powered healthcare ecosystem would raise the bar as far as interoperability is concerned. Eliminating friction and reducing costs associated with using current systems will create a healthier ecosystem for all parties involved. Now is the time to capitalize on this technology and its momentum.
Additionally, using blockchain will help in generating valuable insights. Being able to see the proverbial bigger picture will benefit both patients and healthcare personnel alike. Moreover, it will help improve the value of care as well. All of this will require a universal blockchain system connecting health care facilities from all over the world. Using private blockchains which only require approved partners to examine and share data is not a viable strategy for the healthcare sector by any means.
Dr. Rhea Mehta, the founder of Bowhead Health, a blockchain-based personalized health platform, spoke to NewsBTC about such possibilities, stating:
“While digital technology has dramatically transformed the management of our financial information and transactions, most of us have not seen such gains when it comes to our health data. As the world watches the adoption of blockchain as a new model of decentralization and security for financial services, we believe the time has arrived when the health sector can finally offer the freedom to own our health data using a smart wallet to manage private and public keys with different levels of permission. This will enable patients to share data on an as needed basis with trusted providers.”
– Dr. Rhea Mehta
There are indeed economic, technical, and behavioral challenges that are faced by the current healthcare models. No one has built a large-scale blockchain ecosystem for the healthcare sector to date. That situation will come to change sooner rather than later, with companies (like Bowhead Health) working toward bringing blockchain technology to the medical sector as we speak. These unique opportunities need to be taken advantage of with properly developed proofs of concept.