The use of the blockchain by experts in the healthcare arena is on the increase. In fact, nearly half of execs reported that they plan to use blockchain solutions within their companies. These findings emerged in the recent PwC Health Research Institute survey.
However, there are still implementation challenges which include the lack of trust, expertise, and governance.
Barriers in Blockchain Adoption
The blockchain is inherently secure by design. It can increase trust among the stakeholders. However, 47% of the 74 global healthcare companies that participated in the survey pointed emphasized the lack of trust. Therefore, it is a major roadblock in the use of this technology.
Additionally, they cited the lack of expertise as a major barrier. As many as 61% of the execs indicates the lack of appropriate technological skills as the reason for the bottlenecks in the system.
Furthermore, among the other concerns are the lack of a governance structure (43%), regulatory uncertainty (39%), and operational concerns (36%).
The Way Forward
Regarding the processes in the healthcare field, the authors of the survey state:
“Blockchain could simplify and automate these processes, in some cases saving companies weeks of effort, revenue and lost opportunities. Companies that are slow to change may lose out to ones that use the technology to cut costs and increase efficiencies.”
The above statement echoes a recent Deloitte survey. The latter found that over the past year, leaders have been seeing the blockchain as a tangible and practical solution rather than just a theoretical concept.
According to the PwC Health Research Institute, the blockchain will have a major impact in provider and payer credentialing. Currently, the process of confirming the credentials of a new clinician takes months and these delays cause a lot of revenue loss.
Furthermore, it adds, “Processes that take weeks or months could be accomplished in days.”
In conclusion, “Blockchain-based technologies offer substantial opportunities to reinvent how healthcare companies access, collect, distribute, share, leverage, monitor and audit data. Executives should determine to what extent the blockchain might affect their operations and those of their partners,” the authors explained.
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