Guardtime blockchain technology
There is currently a lot of excitement in the life sciences and healthcare sectors about the deployment of distributed ledger and blockchain technologies see Briefing " Blockchain technology: While these technologies and the regulatory framework within which they operate are still evolving, many companies and organisations are actively developing use cases and potential applications to automate a wide range of activities within the life sciences and healthcare sectors.
Given the complexity of modern healthcare systems, it is perhaps no surprise that the potential applications of blockchain technology which, to date, have been best publicised in the financial services sector, are only now becoming apparent in the life sciences and healthcare sectors. What is clear is that the use of distributed ledgers and blockchains have the potential to significantly increase security and transparency, empower patients with greater control over their medical care, and, at the same time, help contain or even lower costs.
The government is already alive to the potential for blockchain technology. As the report suggests, medical records could be operated on a decentralised blockchain rather than held in a central database.
There could be a reduced risk of unauthorised access as the blockchain would contain protocols governing how patient records could be accessed and by whom. So, for example, a receptionist in a GP surgery might only hold the key to access limited information about a patient, such as name and addresswhile a doctor would have a full key enabling access to all medical information.
Medical records could also give patients full access to their patient data. Patients could specify preferences about what treatment they should receive in different circumstances or request that certain family members be permitted to make medical decisions in the event of an guardtime blockchain technology.
Similarly, it would enable patients to record and update their organ transplant preferences while giving medical practitioners instant access to these preferences which would help to avoid the loss of guardtime blockchain technology due to the transplant window being missed.
This has the effect that healthcare providers often possess fragmented information about patients. This is not as far-fetched, a concept as some might think.
In Estonia, Guardtime, a data security start-up, has announced a partnership with the Estonian guardtime blockchain technology Foundation which will see it deploy a blockchain-based system to guardtime blockchain technology over one million patient healthcare records.
Similarly, Guardtime blockchain technology Watson Health announced earlier in that it had signed a research initiative with theUS Food and Drug Administration aimed at defining a secure, efficient and scalable exchange of health data using blockchain technology.
Protection of intellectual property. Proof of existence platforms are being developed to provide innovators with a tamper-proof way of storing encrypted information, enabling companies to verify the date on which they created guardtime blockchain technology property, such as patents.
The time-stamped documents can then be used as incontrovertible evidence that an inventive step occurred at a particular time and before anyone else. Courts around the world will, however, need to be persuaded about the security and veracity of these time-stamping systems before they establish the necessary legal precedents. Collection of clinical data. The blockchain, coupled with other technological advances including wearable tech and data analytics, will enable pharmaceutical companies to collect securely ever more detailed medical information about patients in real time see Focus " Wearable technology: For example, a patient could record his health data on a continuous basis by the day, hour or even minute by uploading his data to a blockchain.
The health data uploaded to the blockchain could then be analysed to identify patterns signifying potential conditions that a patient may suffer from or be at risk from in the future. Some pharmaceutical companies are already time-stamping the results of clinical trials as a way of providing evidence of when clinical trial results were obtained for inclusion in clinical trial reports to regulators.
Recording clinical trial results in real- time on an immutable blockchain will also make it more difficult for clinical trial results to be subsequently manipulated by researchers, for example, where the focus guardtime blockchain technology a clinical trial is altered to fit the results.
The integrity of guardtime blockchain technology supply chain is of paramount importance to any pharmaceutical manufacturer. The blockchain could be used to assign each batch of drugs with a guardtime blockchain technology electronic serial number, with each batch being tracked as it moves through a series of transactions and through the various stages of the supply chain, for example, from factory to central warehouse, local warehouse, pharmacy and finally to patient. Intermediaries through the supply chain will then be able to validate receipt of drugs and provide updates, for example, the date received, the number of days in storage, and the date shipped.
By tracking movements in real- time it will be much harder for guardtime blockchain technology drugs to enter the supply chain. It may also facilitate prompt product recalls in the event that defects are subsequently discovered. Many of the potential use cases of blockchain in the life sciences and healthcare sectors relate to the recording, tracking and management of medical data.
As a result, special attention must be given guardtime blockchain technology how proposed applications for blockchain will comply with data protection laws, including healthcare-specific requirements.
However, applying some of the requirements of data protection laws to blockchain-based applications can be challenging because of the inherent features of blockchain see box "What is a blockchain? For example, as the technology currently stands, entries on a blockchain are immutable. Therefore, information stored on a blockchain cannot be subsequently amended or deleted.
Another challenge is how to comply with the obligation to hold personal data no longer than is necessary when the blockchain acts as an immutable record. Similarly, another guardtime blockchain technology of blockchain is that information can guardtime blockchain technology encrypted so as to ensure that the information stored on the blockchain is secure.
However, it is likely that the encryption applied to a blockchain today will be made obsolete as more sophisticated encryption techniques are developed. Again, an off ledger solution that allows guardtime blockchain technology to be updated may help to ensure that information stored on a blockchain guardtime blockchain technology secure over time. However, while storing data off ledger may assist with these technical issues, it may not be appropriate for all applications and use cases.
Companies are increasingly exploring how blockchain-based technologies can be used in the life sciences and healthcare sectors. From the outset, they will need to consider carefully compliance with data protection laws, given that in the life sciences and healthcare sectors this will involve the collection of guardtime blockchain technology medical data.
It remains to be seen how regulators will respond to the challenge of reconciling some of guardtime blockchain technology inherent features of blockchain with existing data protection laws. While technological solutions may help to address some of these challenges, it remains likely that regulators will need to address the unique challenges presented by blockchain technology.
In its simplest form, a blockchain is a ledger or database of the assets held and transactions entered into by members of the same blockchain network. The information can then be shared or distributed among guardtime blockchain technology members. Blockchains have three key characteristics; that is, they are:. They can be public, open for all to inspect, and controlled by no-one, or they can operate privately within a closed community of participants guardtime blockchain technology rules governing who may join guardtime blockchain technology access the information.
As such, they are highly transparent, because each participant has a complete, traceable record of every transaction contained on the blockchain. Records can also be encrypted if desired to restrict which participants have access to the data. Once made, records cannot be altered or deleted; they can only be guardtime blockchain technology to in blocks.
Encryption and correspondence between the respective copies of the ledger provide the requisite trust between participants, even if they are strangers. Parties interact with the system itself rather than an independent central authority, in the same way that a clearing house clears trades in shares between buyers and sellers.
Guardtime blockchain technology continuing to use this website you agree to our use of our cookies unless you have disabled them. Online services, resources, and tools Technical resources Stay connected. This article first appeared in the August issue of PLC Magazine There is currently a lot of excitement in the life sciences and healthcare sectors about the deployment of distributed ledger and blockchain technologies see Briefing " Blockchain technology: Life sciences and healthcare sectors The government is already alive to the potential for blockchain technology.
Some of the potential applications in the life sciences and healthcare sectors include: What is a blockchain? Blockchains have three key characteristics; that is, they are: Technology and innovation Financial institutions Life sciences and healthcare. Data protection, privacy and cybersecurity. Subscribe and stay up to date with the latest legal news, information and events
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