The healthcare industry has undergone a massive transformation over the past few years, especially after the outbreak of COVID-19. This industry was growing steadily, but the pandemic and pandemic-led restrictions accelerated the implementation of cutting-edge technologies, such as AI, ML, IoT, and more, to make healthcare services accessible to everyone from the comfort of their homes.
Among all the advanced technologies, one technology that has been a game changer is Blockchain. It is a decentralized ledger to store and access patients’ data and medical records securely. However, this is not the only way blockchain revolutionizes patient data security and medical record keeping. Before mentioning the other benefits of Blockchain, let’s glance through some interesting statistics.
According to Allied Market Research, blockchain technology in the healthcare industry is forecasted to reach USD 16.30 billion by 2031, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 40.8% from 2022 to 2031.
The Significance of Patient Data Security and Medical Records Keeping
All healthcare facilities, such as hospitals, clinics, etc., record their patients’ data and medical records for future reference. Maintaining the security of this data and medical information is critical for many reasons.
Patient data includes sensitive and personal information vulnerable to unauthorized access, fraud, and breach. Apart from personal data, medical facilities should also protect the medical identity of patients. Preventing this identity ensure accurate diagnoses, treatment, billing, and security of other details.
Another importa nt reason to secure patient data is to ensure accurate medical research and advancements that researchers make based on stored data. Besides, the rise of telemedicine and eHealth solutions also make it necessary to transmit and store patient information and records in a secure environment.
Role of Blockchain in Transforming Patient Data Security and Medical Records
Blockchain technology plays a pivotal role in improving patient data security and medical information. Here are some ways how:
1. Better Data Security and Integrity
Patients’ data include sensitive personal information and financial information as well. Blockchain secures this information and maintains its integrity with its decentralized and immutable nature. The technology ensures that the patients’ details are tamper-proof and unalterable by an unauthorized user.
Blockchain links each transaction cryptographically and builds a secure chain of data transmission. The technology also provides patients and hospitals with higher control over their data. The only thing you need to ensure is to implement the technology into a blockchain app using ethical development practices. Therefore, always choose an experienced blockchain or AI app development services provider to develop an AI and blockchain-powered mobile app.
2. Enhanced Interoperability
Interoperability facilitates multiple systems to connect and communicate for transferring or exchanging data and information. Without required security, this data or information can be compromised during the transmission. Implementing blockchain technology can solve this issue and enhance interoperability.
The technology provides a unified framework to facilitate the secure transmission and exchange of healthcare information to all authorized users. Patients, medical professionals, and other professionals can access precise and updated records required for better diagnoses and patient treatment.
3. Secured Medicines Supply Chain Process
Blockchain builds a trustworthy drug supply chain process by generating immutable records of drugs’ movement and transactions. Transparency in the drug supply from source to destination guarantees that only authorized medicine is being transferred. To accurately integrate blockchain in the medicines supply chain process, develop a blockchain mobile app or solution depending on your custom needs.
4. Integration with IoT-powered Wearables
Blockchain technology can be integrated with IoT-based wearables to improve the authentication and security of the data contained within fitness or health trackers. Users and their health professionals can access and update this data without worrying about any type of breach.
5. Seamless Billing Management
Blockchain is the most viable solution to the complex and time-consuming billing processes associated with patient management. The technology automates transactions through smart contracts while ensuring end-to-end security. Besides billing, blockchain also streamlines claims processes and lowers administrative costs.
6. Medical Records Security
Medical records are the files doctors maintain to keep track of a patient’s medical history. Due to poor security, records can be easily accessed and changed. Blockchain technology leverages a distributed network with no point of failure. In other words, hackers cannot find any loophole to access the data.
Any breach attempt at one node in the network will fail due to the protection from other nodes of the same network. Some other benefits of integrating blockchain in EMR (electronic medical record) keeping are universal access, real-time record updating, minimized administrative costs, enhanced security, and automation via smart contracts.
7. Improved and Accurate Healthcare Research
Medical research professionals need a vast amount of patient data and their treatment information to conduct healthcare research and clinical trials. Blockchain technology enables these professionals to access accurate data with complete security. Smart contracts and timestamps in blockchain validate the authenticity of the data. In short, the researchers can have the assurance that the data they are using for research is genuine and accurate.
How to Integrate Blockchain in Healthcare?
For integrating blockchain in the healthcare sector for patient data and medical record security, develop an app or solution. The first step is to prepare a list including your custom app requirements, its goals, and the problems it will solve. For example, in this case, the blockchain-based mobile application will ensure patient data and medical records security.
The next step is to find an experienced healthcare app development services provider. For this, conduct thorough market research, shortlist a few companies, and check their portfolio/case studies to understand the type of Blockchain-powered apps or solutions they have developed.
Check their pricing models, and contact the ones that meet your unique requirements. Before you partner with any blockchain solution development company, ask if they sign an NDA (non-disclosure agreement). Also, ask about the communication mediums/modes the company uses to update their clients on the project’s progress. Verify the company offers post-launch support and maintenance services to ensure your app is up-to-date and error-free.
If you already have a medical or healthcare-related mobile application and want to integrate blockchain technology into it, find a blockchain app development provider that offers the same services.
The Bottom Line
Ensuring the security of patient data and medical records is critical to ensure their privacy and prevent their identity from different thefts. It can be done by integrating blockchain technology into the healthcare industry. Implementing this technology verifies comprehensive data security and renders many other benefits, such as streamlined and secure billing, a secure drug supply chain process, and improved interoperability.
Healthcare or medical facilities can contact a reliable blockchain app development company to integrate the technology into their existing systems/mobile applications or create a new blockchain-powered solution/app from scratch. Before you find a trusted and experienced blockchain solution development company, define your custom requirements and figure out the pain points you want to overcome with blockchain technology.