We are often asked, mostly by people outside the healthcare industry, how will Evidentli adjust its practices to the imminent breakthrough of blockchain technology into healthcare. So often, in fact, that we thought that some clarification is needed.
Very briefly, blockchain technology is a distributed database that is unfeasible for any one entity to control or regulate. It provides the backbone of cryptocurrencies but has had little application in different industries at least so far and is therefore often used anonymously with this industry.
So what's so great about about blockchain?
- It is a major innovation in database technology, an industry that despite its massive impact on every business has seen very little disruption in the last few decades.
- Its decentralisation and lack of control is parallel to the internet itself; we also didn't know how the internet will work out and it ended up being revolutionary.
- Blockchain is great in letting markets manage a finite shared resource (which is why bitcoin there are no new bitcoin).
So why not in healthcare?
- Healthcare has lots of data but it is produced by lots of sources (mostly health services) which needs to be tightly controlled for privacy
- Healthcare data is not a commodity so it matters who uses it, in other words it needs to be regulated. If you received a prescription for a drug from your doctor, it is important that you can't sell it to your friend.
- Healthcare data is not finite. Blockchain is notoriously not scalable.
But can't healthcare change?
It can but the question is why. So far, there have only been applications where blockchain is either completely unsuitable, or is far less efficient than traditional databases. Maybe we just need to find the application but the question is why is that taking so long?
Will Blockchain Ever Really Matter in Healthcare?
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