The future of healthcare is murky. It’s subject to political discourse, the whims of insurance companies, and changing industry trends. It’s hard to forecast the future of this industry, but here we go.
Blockchain’s role in healthcare will only expand. It’s not an essential piece of healthcare infrastructure today, so it can’t get any less significant.
There’s hope that blockchain ledgers could provide the tools for direct oversight in clinical trials. More immediate access by regulators could accelerate time-consuming and costly drug testing process.
Others see blockchain as impacting healthcare billing and payments more than anything else. Expediting payments via blockchain-powered automation would slash administrative costs for healthcare providers. The idea that those savings would be passed on to the patient, while perhaps naive, is possible.
The future of blockchain in healthcare is uncertain but optimistic. The healthcare industry must remain on the cutting edge of innovation. It’s a matter of life and death.
Here’s what the experts have to say:
1. Chrissa McFarlane, CEO of Patientory, Inc.
“It will transform how transactions are executed and save the industry magnitudes of costs, open up information for both financial and clinical improvements. The future of blockchain in healthcare is the beginning of a collaborative ecosystem.”
2. Matt Riemann, Health Futurist and Founder of Shae
“If the blockchain bubble continues, we could see a huge influx of companies, organisations and governments start to transition their healthcare products, services and operations to this platform within the next 3-5 years. Personal and population health data (genomic, phenomic and epigenetic data) will sit as the core opportunities for blockchain – in the future no intervention or interaction will be administered without first considering true personalization. Inter- and intra- payer-provider-patient connection, communication and sharing will provide the next layer of opportunity for blockchain, with an open sharing model between all parties being the only viable way forward in the future of population health management. And finally, opportunities in the development and implementation of healthcare, such as data security, supply chain management, drug traceability, and transparency in clinical trials will offer an opportunity for blockchain to establish itself as the platform of choice in the healthcare marketplace.”
3. Matthew Sinderbrand, CEO and Co-founder of BetterPath
“The most significant area where blockchain will make an impact in healthcare is the currently defunct clinical research process, where it costs $1.5B to bring a drug to market, and the dissemination of treatment advances takes 10+ years on average. Blockchain can expedite clinical research substantially, specifically real-world evidence, observational, and post-market safety studies, through networks that would allow stakeholders like the FDA to provide decentralized oversight via smart contracts. Opening up the research data acquisition pipeline in this fashion would allow any organization capturing health data to support industry- or NIH-sponsored research, and significantly boost the volume and variety of evidence available for analysis.”
4. David Harlow, Principal of The Harlow Group LLC and Publisher of HealthBlawg
“Private blockchains for inventory control (medical devices on a hospital campus) or for supply chain (pharmaceutical manufacturing and distribution) are the sorts of next-level, still not-too-risky implementations that will be more readily adopted. Using blockchain to maintain a broadly-accessible, complete, accurate, provider- and payor-agnostic lifetime patient health record is the holy grail in this realm, but we are likely years away from that becoming a reality. Companies marketing blockchain-enabled record aggregation and data rights management to patients have recently entered the marketplace, and it will be interesting to see how they gain traction in the marketplace.”
5. Dr. Mark Baker, CEO of MediChain
“Every digital healthcare technology, every procedure, every consultation, every prescription will be on a blockchain. Blockchain technologies that don't engage today will be nowhere to be seen. Exchanges that don't trade medical utility tokens will vanish not because they are the only utility token, but because they will be a key, high volume global transaction and missing out now will leave those exchanges continually behind the curve as the MySpaces of crypto.”
6. Barby Ingle, President at International Pain Foundation
“Blockchain in healthcare should be a requirement. We need it already. We must overcome the challenges and encourage others to implement blockchain solutions. Blockchain will bring the power to people, meaning we will be responsible for our own records and be responsible for our own data. In the future data, will be organized, accessible, and usable across departments and corporations, making it readily available in times of need.”
7. Ildar Fazulyanov, CEO and Founder of WELL
“We believe that we have just began to tap into the possibilities that blockchain brings the healthcare industry. What was once a very foreign and complex concept is being used to build user-friendly applications in every part of the healthcare world. It won’t be long before blockchain is being used in the majority of the health and fitness apps and products that will help people take control of their own health (even if those people don’t know what blockchain is or how it works).”
8. Victoria Saucier, CEO of GAINFY
9. Andrew Hoppin, CEO and Co-founder of CoverUS
“Blockchains will less and less be thought of as a distinct category of industry or technology unto themselves in healthcare. Rather, just like “the Internet” in the 1990s, use of blockchain technologies will be a skillset and toolset that will enable a vast array of products, services, and lines of business to improve.”
10. Ofer Lidsky, CEO and Founder of Digital DNAtix Ltd
“I see a world where a person can have access to all of his medical data from anywhere on the planet. A future where all healthcare systems will be connected by many different private and public blockchains. It is the new world of personalized medicine and preventive medicine at its best.”
Share your feedback and we'll consider adding it to the piece!
Have expert insights to add to this article?
Share your feedback and we'll consider adding it to the piece!ADD YOUR INSIGHTS