Six emerging uses for blockchain in healthcare

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Alexander Gaffney Senior Manager, Health Research Institute, PwC US January 28, 2019

Forty-nine percent of companies are developing, piloting or implementing blockchain projects, according to a PwC survey of 74 global healthcare companies.

Companies should be prepared to identify where blockchain could improve their operations and interactions with trusted partners. In healthcare, six use cases likely contain the highest potential for disruption.

Six uses for blockchain in healthcare

Six ways healthcare can use blockchain
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HRI impact analysis

The introduction of blockchain technology into the healthcare industry won’t occur overnight, nor will many of its benefits be immediately realizable. Rather, major transformations begin with small steps.

Blockchain will be disruptive, but that disruption in healthcare won’t affect all companies equally. Companies should determine how blockchain might affect their operations and those of their partners. The greatest impacts are likely to be felt by intermediaries, including those who check, transfer, process or hold data for other healthcare companies. Blockchain has the potential to develop from a fringe technology into a major protocol for healthcare ecosystem players to record and communicate transactional information.

In some sectors, disruption of the status quo is already underway, and companies have just a few years before full-scale blockchain implementations begin to appear on the market. Though a first-mover advantage isn’t as big of a consideration, since an ecosystem-level approach is needed to implement blockchain, first movers will be able to set the standards by which data will be transferred, shared and checked, and will be better suited to move quickly to recognize efficiencies when that ecosystem is established.

To read more about blockchain in healthcare

Please see HRI's report, A prescription for blockchain and healthcare: Reinvent or be reinvented.

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Alexander Gaffney

Alexander Gaffney

Senior Manager, Health Research Institute, PwC US

Tel: +1 (202) 836 1604

Carlos  Moreira

Carlos Moreira

Principal, US Pharmaceuticals and Life Sciences, PwC US

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