Blockchain technology is poised to revolutionize more than just payment and crypto-currency. Many vertical industries will be reshaped by the new trusted data models enabled and inspired by the blockchain – healthcare is no exception. In fact, healthcare may hold the greatest opportunities for meaningful use of the technology. Early pioneers have explored some of the first use cases for medical payments, electronic health records, HIPAA/data privacy, drug counterfeiting, and credentialing of healthcare professionals. We have only begun to scratch the surface in how to automate the complexities of today’s healthcare systems and design new systems which focus on trust, transparency and the alignment of incentives.
Metcalf, Bass, Dhillon, and Hooper have curated a collection of examples based on the fundamentals of blockchain that build upon the early successes and examples that point to the future. After a brief introduction to bitcoin, blockchain and the protocols available, a getting-started guide is presented specific to health and healthcare. The authors discuss the complexities and possibilities of smart contracts and some of the early consortia that are exploring the possibilities.
Examples and use cases are found throughout the book, with specific sections that cover the more sophisticated and far-reaching examples which have the potential to scale at the industry-level. In addition, a discussion of integrating blockchain technology into other advanced healthcare trends and IT systems – such as telemedicine, artificial intelligence, machine learning, the Internet of Things, value-based payments , patient engagement solutions, big data solutions, medical tourism, and precision medicine/genetic therapies among many others are presented. The final section provides a glimpse into the future using blockchain technology and examples of research projects that are still in labs across the globe. The appendices may prove particularly useful for additional details on how to get started, including resources and organizations specifically focusing on blockchain and distributed ledger solutions.
Table of Contents
Introduction. Telemedicine. Artificial Intelligence. Machine Learning. The Internet of Things. Value-Based Payments. Patient Engagement Solutions. Big Data Solutions. Medical Tourism. Precision Medicine/Genetic Therapies. Cybersecurity. Pharmaceutical Supply Chain/Development. Patient Engagement. Hospital Administration. Future Uses of Blockchain Technology.