IEEE Releases First Study of Blockchain Adoption in the Pharmaceutical Industry – Pharmaceutical Technology

By Agnes Shanley    October 18, 2017

Blockchain, the digital ledger system that supports the digital currency, bitcoin, is being adapted and evaluated for use in a number of applications and industries, including banking and financial services. Efforts to use blockchain and technologies that it enables, such as smart contracts, in pharma are at an earlier stage, but there is a growing recognition that the decentralized platform could offer benefits, allowing supply chain partners to share and verify data in a secure IT environment that is difficult to hack into. Blockchain also allows users to choose the level of data anonymity they want to grant partners, depending on their strategic importance, and how important the data are to their supply-chain roles.

It comes as no surprise that electrical and electronics engineers, who would be crucial in developing blockchain solutions, are also studying its use in various industries and examining its potential in pharma and healthcare closely. On Oct. 17, 2017, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Standards Association disclosed that it had completed and would release its first benchmarking report, The State of Blockchain Adoption in the Pharmaceutical Supply Chain, for purchase in October 2017.

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New Hyperledger Project Fuels Healthcare Blockchain Development – HIT Infrastructure

By Elizabeth O’Dowd    October 18, 2017

Hyperledger’s latest project, Hyperledger Quilt builds on its network of frameworks, supporting the potential future of healthcare blockchain.

Hyperledger announced its latest project, Hyperledger Quilt, offering another potential framework for organizations to develop their healthcare blockchain solution.

Quilt is an implementation of the Interledger protocol (ILP), which makes transactions across ledgers. ILP is primarily a payment protocol and routs shared data across different digital ledgers. It also isolates senders and receivers, protecting them from centralized transaction failure.

The new project is being developed in the open source community, transfering value to both distributed and non-distributed ledgers. It is designed to widely identify accounts and simultaneously complete transactions from all parties involved.

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Five Blockchain Use Cases for Healthcare Payers, Providers – HealthIT Analytics

Blockchain has started to attract interest from healthcare payers and providers, but how will the distributed data methodology manifest itself in the industry?

By Jennifer Bresnick    October 10, 2017

The distributed ledger methodology known as blockchain is piquing interest in the healthcare industry as organizations search for more secure and trusted strategies for managing big data.

By decentralizing ownership of key data sets, yet increasing the strength of permissioned sharing protocols, blockchain proponents hope to create an interoperable, patient-centered big data ecosystem that prioritizes accuracy, timeliness, and shared-decision making.

Providers are eager to invest in this vision, which could be game-changing for payers, patients, and their clinicians.  Interest in blockchain-based tools is strong, with 68 percent of payers and 12 percent of providers planning on at least one blockchain implementation by the end of 2018, according to a recent Black Book poll.

Early use cases for blockchain have included the creation of a truly longitudinal health record controlled entirely by the individual and a more robust patient matching and identification system that improves patient safety while eliminating administrative pain points.

But as blockchain gains ground among health data management experts, the number and scope of these use cases continues to grow.

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70% of payers plan to integrate blockchain by 2019 – FierceHealthcare

By Evan Sweeney    October 4, 2017

Despite the hype surrounding blockchain technology, there are few real-world applications within healthcare.

That could change significantly in the near future.

The health insurance industry is preparing for a massive shift over the next year, with 70% percent of payers planning to have blockchain technology integrated into their systems by the beginning of 2019, according to a survey published (PDF) by Black Book Research.

The nation’s larger payers are even more invested. Ninety-eight percent of organizations with more than 500,000 members are actively considering or in the process of deploying blockchain. Fourteen percent of those companies said they are currently testing those solutions.

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Blockchain Awareness, Deployment Plans in Healthcare Orgs Ramping up, Survey Finds – Healthcare Informatics Magazine

By Rajiv Leventhal    October 4, 2017

The majority of healthcare organization respondents in a recent survey are quite bullish on blockchain’s potential to help solve interoperability and data security problems.

About one-fifth of hospital executives and three-quarters of payers are either considering deploying, or are in the process of implementing some blockchain solution sets, according to a recent Black Book survey.

For the research, Black Book conducted a 2017 Q3 survey of 88 healthcare payers and 276 provider technology executives, managers and IT specialists to deliver a better comprehension of current and planned enterprise deployment of blockchain solutions.

The survey also looked to measure the level of organizational investment in healthcare blockchain technology, as well as which companies are considered as having the strongest healthcare industry expertise and credentials.  A blockchain is an open, continuous, and secure ledger stored online that can’t be altered. Via blockchain technology, users can share information among multiple stakeholders, recording transactions between parties efficiently and in a more verifiable and permanent way, experts attest.

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Will Healthcare Blockchain Resolve Data Privacy Concerns? – HealthIT Security

A recent Black Book survey shows the majority of medical group managers and IT specialists believe healthcare blockchain will alleviate data privacy concerns.

By Elizabeth Snell    October 3, 2017

Healthcare blockchain is increasingly being viewed as a potential solution to numerous IT problems, such as connectivity issues, data privacy concerns, and patient record sharing barriers, according to a recent Black Book survey.

The Black Book Q3 report interviewed 88 healthcare payers and 276 provider technology executives, managers, and IT specialists.

Nearly all payers that were surveyed – 98 percent – with more than 500,000 members said they were actively considering or were in the process of deploying blockchain solutions. Fourteen percent said they were involved in some form of trial deployments.

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Blockchain Activity Grows Sharply for Healthcare Payers, Providers – HealthIT Analytics

Blockchain is gaining steam among healthcare payers and providers seeking to enhance interoperability, patient care management, and data security.

By Jennifer Bresnick    October 3, 2017

Blockchain has come to healthcare in a big way during 2017, generating significant interest among providers and payers as an innovative way to bolster data exchange while keeping sensitive information secure.

The distributed ledger methodology has become so popular in recent months that more than three quarters of insurance companies – and 98 percent of plans with more than half a million members – are currently implementing or are actively planning to implement blockchain-based tools.

“The most popular connectivity strategy circulating among health care technologists, and even ONC, is blockchain technology,” said Doug Brown, Managing Partner of Black Book, which conducted a survey of payer and provider technology executives in Q3.

Awareness of the theoretically tamper-proof ledger system has skyrocketed in recent months, due in part to the ONC’s interest in the matter, but perhaps more to a parade of high-profile data breaches that have rocked multiple industries.

“Executive blockchain education has shifted from Blockchain 101 to selecting the appropriate healthcare blockchain technology protocols,” said Brown.

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