Philips Healthcare has partnered with the blockchain startup Tierion to investigate the technology behind bitcoin and its possible applications in the healthcare sector. The news about the project was first revealed by Tierion via the company’s official twitter account. More information about the project is expected in 2016.
Philips Healthcare, which is one of the three main divisions of Amsterdam-based Philips, is committed to bring innovations that enhance the quality of care and improve people’s lives. With the new partnership, the group expects to accelerate the process of modernizing patient health care.
Tierion helps its clients to protect their data by offering a simple way of collecting information and storing it in the bitcoin blockchain.
The blockchain technology could significantly improve the health care industry as it provides a great solution to recording data. While being totally transparent, the technology will help to keep patient information confidential at any time.
The blockchain is a decentralized public ledger for recording transactions implemented in the bitcoin network. The system is designed to make transactions safe among millions of users.
Although healthcare services providers are investing thousands of dollars annually to manage patient records, there are still problems with recording medical data. An access to patient information is usually limited only to the hospital network, what increases the risk of hacker attacks. But the blockchain technology can improve security and privacy of electronic medical information.
All patients will be given a private key and a multi-sig address in order to access their records stored on the bitcoin blockchain. It will not only help hospitals to save money from managing electronic records, but will enable patients to select the healthcare provider they would like to share their data with.
Earlier this year, another blockchain startup, called Factom, has entered the healthcare industry through a partnership with US-based medical records company HealthNautica, which believes that integration of the bitcoin technology will help secure the integrity of highly sensitive documents, including billing medical records and surgery scheduling data.
The number of startups embracing the blockchain technology is growing each year. The technology has a potential to transform industries controlled by central authorities, such as payments, healthcare, manufacturing, biotech and real estate. The blockchain startups will use the technology to create industries where smaller companies can compete with larger corporations.
Besides, the technology holds a lot of promise for the IoT industry, enabling large number of appliances to work together in a distributed network.
However, many people still don’t understand the concept of the blockchain and see it as too complicated to use. To overcome the challenge, companies will have to work on developing easy and simple user interfaces.