Sadly, the Coronavirus (or COVID-19) is the primary concern on everyone’s mind. Everyone is either surfing through social media feed or checking the different official websites to be updated with the latest news relating to the disease that has almost become second nature.
It started from being a localized flu-like disease in Wuhan; Then, on 11th March, the COVID-19 outbreak leads to a global crisis. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared the outbreak to be a pandemic disease. Besides, two days before the WHO’s announcement, the Italian government had put their country on a total lockdown to control and manage the spread of the disease.
After a few days, some states also declared complete lockdown. Currently, about one-third of the world’s population is under total lockdown now!
It was initially detected on 31st December 2019, in the Chinese town of Wuhan, the novel Coronavirus has taken hold of the world in its cage of fear and panic. Various reports have shown that there have been more than 640 thousand confirmed cases and 30 thousand deaths. Italy has been the worst country affected in the world, having more than 10 thousand patients attacked by the virus.
But presently, the United States has become the major point of the attack, having more than 116 thousand confirmed cases and around 2000 deaths. And the numbers keep increasing daily.
How blockchain can Collaborate with the Healthcare Team
There are lots of areas where the blockchain could be of good advantage to the healthcare sector, including the management of clinical data, interoperability, and supply chain and billing management, etc. There are also essential cost-saving implications.
Based on the report made by BIS Research, it was reported that the global healthcare will market spend on blockchain is expected to hit about $5.61 billion, and this could save the healthcare sector up to $100-150 billion per year by 2025.
Based on the sensitive system of the medical records, written below are various essential reasons why blockchain is the perfect technology on which we can develop a global cooperative healthcare ecosystem:
Data Reliability and Security
The healthcare sector inevitably has to manage and store an enormous amount of data, and this presents itself has an important difficulty, with various dangers from mismanagement of health records to security rupture.
The implementation of blockchain technology could alleviate these dangers in two possible ways –
- By giving every patient a specific identifier, and developing a keen contract between patients and the medical professionals. This would not only assure that the data shared is trustworthy and correct but would also improve efficiency, with quick diagnoses.
- Based on the transparency nature of the technology, hospitals could promise all their patients’ that their health records are ‘’tamper-proof’’, while still assuring the data’s privacy.
Getting access to a patient’s record can be a time-consuming activity, powerfully setting back the patient’s treatment and care. It can also lead to the mismanagement of those records, and, in any situation, a patient can be misdiagnosed.
The digitalization of medical records through blockchain could decrease that ineffectiveness by developing a network where trustworthy and dependable information is accessible without any delay.
Naturally, blockchain can be described as a decentralized technology. It implies that data is not stored in a server but distributed among different participants, storages, and locations.
Therefore, the health documents included in the blockchain can be accessed by every party involved i.e., those who have the required permissions in a transparent and reliable environment.
This application will bring about the interoperability of record sharing majorly between healthcare stakeholders with essential information made available to them effectively and efficiently, while still guaranteeing patients’ privacy and security.
Essentially, it could also enhance cooperation among health professionals across the globe.
Processing the way to a Global Healthcare Network
By influencing blockchain technology, not just on a local level but at a global level, we could develop an encompassing and universal network where health information can be easily accessed and distributed without delay.
For medical professionals and hospitals, possessing a safe and dependable database of health records would decrease the dangers of misdiagnosis, essential resulting in the optimization of the treatment process.
The Essential Role of Cyber Security in Healthcare
Real interoperability is made feasible through the digitalization of health and medical records, disclosing opportunities more than the ordinary distribution of information. What if there was an administered inaccessible permission for the network where major stakeholders such as R&D labs and universities could upload data?
A distributed blockchain infrastructure and app layer could be of benefit because it would enable hospitals, the public administration, and private companies such as insurance providers to cooperate and distribute solutions and insights effectively.
This transfer of fast and updated data between health professionals across the globe could, beneficial to researches and optimize clinical trials.
It would be of great benefit and relief to see that the development of a global healthcare ecosystem through blockchain technology would take time and stand against its difficulties. Also, it could assist us in responding better to similar or worse health threats in the forecasted period.