Within the next five to 10 years, a blockchain ecosystem with healthcare-focused use cases involving health data exchanges, smart assets management, insurance and payment solutions, blockchain platform providers, and consortiums will emerge.
Frost & Sullivan’s Transformational Health team believes that ongoing digital democratisation of care delivery models towards a much anticipated personalised and outcome-based treatment paradigm will be the major impetus for blockchain adoption.
Furthermore, the convergence of blockchain with emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, m-health and Internet of Medical Things (IoMT) provides new opportunities to explore digital health economies.
At its core, blockchain would offer the potential of a shared platform that decentralises healthcare interactions ensuring access control, authenticity, and integrity while presenting the industry with radical possibilities for value-based care and reimbursement models.
“Burgeoning connected health devices and the need to protect against data breaches make blockchain, with its ubiquitous security infrastructure, the obvious foundation for emerging digital health workflows and advanced healthcare interoperability,” says transformational health industry analyst Kamaljit Behera.
“It creates an additional trust layer through unique distributed network consensus that uses cryptography techniques to minimise cyber threats. Blockchain technology may not be the panacea for healthcare industry challenges needs but it holds the potential to save billions of dollars by optimising current workflows and disintermediating some high-cost gatekeepers.”
Blockchain Technology in Global Healthcare, 2017-2025, new research from Frost & Sullivan’s Advanced Medical Technologies Growth Partnership Service programme, examines blockchain potential to resolve concerns around data interoperability, cybersecurity, insurance notarisation and medical billing frauds, integrity around clinical trials, and drug supply chain provenance. Along with adoption timelines, the study looks at growth opportunities, implementation challenges, government and commercial initiatives, select collaborations and deals, and companies/consortia to watch.
“The healthcare industry needs to establish blockchain consortia to facilitate partnerships and create standards for future implementation on a large scale across healthcare use cases,” says Behera. “A blockchain-based system will enable unprecedented collaboration, bolstering innovation in medical research and the execution of larger healthcare concepts such as precision medicine and population health management.
“In IoMT, it can settle security, privacy and reliability concerns to allow integration of health data from Internet of Medical Things (IoT) or medical devices for remote and autonomous monitoring. In the pharmaceutical industry, the technology can potentially save $200 billion by inhibiting counterfeit and substandard drugs.”