By Samantha McGrail

– Global blockchain technology complements healthcare artificial intelligence (AI) and internet of things (IoT) – based marketplace offerings, and is expected to cross $500 million by 2022 at a compound annual growth rate (CARG) of 61.4 percent, according to a recent Frost & Sullivan report. 

“Health insurance payers, providers, and pharma companies are expected to adopt blockchain systems ahead of other healthcare industry stakeholders,” Kamaljit Behera, senior industry analyst, transformation health, said in the press release. “In the future, distributed ledger technology (DTL) will be leveraged by telehealth vendors and tech giants such as Apple, Amazon, Google, and Microsoft to monetize data science and analytical services with innovative patient-centric care models.” 

With the question of trust and security at the forefront of digital healthcare, Frost & Sullivan’s recent study intended to uncover the reason behind the success of blockchain technology in the healthcare industry as it becomes gradually implemented into this space. By analyzing commercial partnerships and best practice case-studies, they hoped to identify growth opportunities as well.

Using the information from the study of 250 vendors, the analysis found that there are numerous ways providers can successfully integrate blockchain technology in the healthcare space, including explore applications like healthcare data infrastructure, on-demand healthcare, pharma drug supply chain and other areas of technology.

Providers may also consider becoming part of consortiums such as synoptic, Hashed Health, Insureum, and MediBloc. 

In addition, it is also important to engage with buyers and establish a collaborative ecosystem for developing focused cases and “governance standards for future commercial scalability and success.”

Because this large-scale deployment of PHR application seems more practical in Europe and Asia where the healthcare data vendor system is less complex, it is important to target not only the US, but also other countries with payer-and provider-focused blockchain applications. 

The interplay between Blockchain, AI, and IoT, will further catalyze the space of innovation adoption and related applications in the healthcare realm.

Although the healthcare market struggles to find a trade-off between the risk and reward of going digital, the integration of Blockchain technology may provide an appropriate solution to reduce some of the urgent needs around trust and security with digital workflows, the press release stated. 

With the worry of security surrounding healthcare in a digital space, last month, Cumberland joined the MediLedger project, which currently uses blockchain technology to improve drug supply chain networks. 

An initiative of Chronicled, the project focuses on working with healthcare and pharmaceutical industries to develop these blockchain- based supply chain networks based on open standards and specifications.

“It’s exciting to be involved in helping to simplify the complexities of the pharma supply chain through the use of cutting-edge blockchain technologies,” said Jeff Lee, managing partner of Cumberland’s Life Science Division. 

The project utilizes blockchain technology to store synchronized public data so that individuals all use the same “source of truth.” In addition, it maintains a record of confidential transactions and uses smart contracts to highlight business rules and manage transactions, which ensures the nobility of the system. 

MediLedger vocalized that it is releasing a saleable returns verification system that meets Drug Supply Chain Security Act regulations, which is expected to take place on November 27. The system will look up directory verification routing service, which can allow for quicker responses between pharmaceutical wholesalers and manufacturers. Only authorized companies will be allowed to place their products in the directory, establishing the highest security. 

“Blockchain technology, in the context of MediLedger, ensures that there is one source of truth, and we can design it so only the license holder can create records for its own products, for example. This may seem like a simple illustration, but it is revolutionary,” said Chronicled CTO Maurizio Greco.

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