Deloitte: 3 ways blockchain might improve hospital operations by 2027

Blockchain technology has the potential to streamline operations management at hospitals and health systems, according to a Deloitte Center for Health Solutions report.

For the report, the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions surveyed 33 experts including healthcare C-suite executives, physician leaders and technologists about how digital technologies will change hospital operations during the next 10 years.

Blockchain, a permanent and shared record of online transactions or exchanges, was one of the respondents' frequently-discussed technologies. Blockchain uses cryptographic techniques to enable each user on a network of computers to securely store, exchange and view information.

Here are three examples of how blockchain might improve hospital operations during the next 10 years.

1. Data interoperability. A blockchain-enabled health information exchange would alleviate security concerns related to data-sharing between different providers. A patient would be able to access and share their data from the blockchain and each provider would be able to update relevant information with an individual key.

2. Supply chain management. Blockchain would enhance transparency and accountability as medical supplies and drugs move across the hospital supply chain, the report states. With a blockchain-enabled supply chain management system, retailers, wholesalers, distributors and manufacturers would be able to track the transfer of materials across the globe.

3. Revenue cycle management. A blockchain-based payment process system can improve the efficiency of the hospital revenue cycle, in part by eliminating the need for intermediaries between hospitals, physicians, insurers and patients, according to the report. One use might involve enabling patients or insurers to deposit a payment, which would not be released until a predetermined clinical outcome is reached.

Click here to view the full report.

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