IBM director shares insights on Aetna blockchain ecosystem

In January, IBM announced its collaboration with Aetna to develop a blockchain network to cut costs and improve efficiency in the healthcare industry.

Francisco Curbera, PhD, director of innovation and solution incubation development at IBM, explained the initiative in more detail with news website Smartereum.

“As a result of this collaboration, we expect increased connectivity, easier data-sharing and less friction in processes across the healthcare ecosystem. Patients will benefit by receiving better, more efficient and higher quality health services,” he said.

Many of the organizations IBM partners with are healthcare-related. However, the blockchain developer did bring financial services company PNC into the ecosystem.

“The collaboration is looking for a diverse set of participants in the healthcare ecosystem, including those providing financial services. PNC has been providing financial services in the healthcare industry for over 20 years,” Dr. Curbera told Smartereum.

The blockchain network will be designed to complement data interoperability and patient empowerment. Through the decentralized ledger, organizations will be able to  add a layer of trust and transparency when exchanging data.

“Blockchain technology is designed to create trust across individuals and organizations by securing and verifying the source and integrity of data and transactions. It does this in the way other technologies can’t easily deliver. By creating this level of trust, blockchain networks enable creating of business networks that tackle difficult industry wide problems that require strong collaboration among partners and competitors,” Dr. Curbera said.

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