Over the years, the blockchain technology also referred to as distributed ledger technology has proven to be a versatile tool for decentralized monetary transactions and data exchange in various industries, including healthcare.
Several stakeholders in healthcare have adopted blockchain for various operations, including maintenance of patient records, while ensuring privacy and security as the records are stored on a network, recruiting patients for trials and providing transparency and traceability in the supply chain. Gradually, blockchain technology has disclosed unprecedented opportunities in this sector by unlocking significant advantages.
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The term blockchain refers to the way it stores transaction data in blocks that are linked to form a chain. Since every entry is stored as a block on the chain, the length of the chain increases as more transactions are recorded and stored. This digital ledger technology was developed in 2008 by Satoshi Nakamoto. It is designed in such a way that transactions are immutable, which means that digital information, or transactions records can be recorded and distributed but cannot be altered, deleted or destroyed. In recent years, the use of blockchain technology in healthcare, specifically in drug discovery and clinical trial management has been on the rise. This can be attributed to the fact that blockchain provides a faster solution for tracking and authenticating pharmaceutical products / drugs across the supply chain.
The concept of utilizing blockchain platforms for drug data management and drug trackability has gained significant attention from several stakeholders and companies in the past few years. Despite the advantages offered by such platforms in the management of data and data security, there are certain challenges associated with the use of blockchain.
In addition to the aforementioned advantages, blockchain has gained popularity across various other fields, including education, finance, transportation and telecom. Due to multiple advantages across diverse application areas, including enhanced safety, security, and data management, blockchain technologies have evolved significantly and continuously transformed the industrial landscape.
Owing to various advantages offered by blockchain, its popularity has invariably grown. Specifically, it has made a considerable impact in the healthcare sector, as it has the potential to revolutionize the healthcare sector by overcoming the existing challenges. One of the features of blockchain is that it lets organizations establish transparency and privacy, helping to conceal sensitive patient data while enabling access and sharing when necessary. In the future, blockchain technology may aid in the provision of personalized, authentic, and reliable clinical trial services by combining up-to-date and secure patient data with other emerging technologies. Considering the fact that blockchain technology is already employed in healthcare and various other industries, additional efforts and initiatives will allow the industries to leverage the full potential of blockchain technology.
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