The world spends more than $7 trillion dollars on healthcare. But that spending is unevenly distributed, inefficiently allocated and built on ageing technology.

​Blockchain has the potential to transform healthcare, placing the patient at the centre of the healthcare ecosystem and increasing the security, privacy, and interoperability of health data across the world.

We explore five companies actively tackling some of the biggest challenges in the space.

Intiva Health helps hospitals vet and verify staff credentials

In hospitals, acquiring credentials to gain access to facilities for medical professionals can take weeks. That’s where Intiva Health comes in.

Intiva Health wants to save the healthcare industry billions of dollars due to the inefficiencies in the credentialing process, while simultaneously increasing the quality and transparency of care for patients around the world.

It’s solution is built on top of Swirlds hashgraph distributed ledger technology – a different type of network that doesn’t rely on the slow, energy intensive processes used in blockchain networks.

ReadyDoc, it’s Dapp, stores documents and credentials of medical staff on the distributed ledger.

Healthcare providers and facilities can pull information they need from the network knowing that it is pre-verified, securely stored, and readily available, creating an ongoing, self-auditing verification of work history and clinical reputation.

MediChain puts patients at the centre of healthcare data

In the US alone, medical errors are now the 3rd largest cause of death costing $1 trillion.

MediChain wants to create a way for a patient’s data to be accessed by research facilities and doctors to help treat people with similar ailments.

This system would help doctors know more about conditions based on evidence from other patients with the same condition, helping reduce misdiagnosis and find cures to the world’s worst diseases.

FarmaTrust is helping rid the world of counterfeit drugs

Some 30% of drugs in circulation worldwide are counterfeit and kill up to a million people every year. FarmaTrust has created a platform that helps people know where their medicine comes from.

Their blockchain solution can track the manufacturing, shipping and selling of drugs anywhere in the world. For a consumer, they can use the FarmaTrust app to find out if their drugs are safe or not.

This system also helps prevent fake medicines from entering the pharmaceutical supply chain, and let manufacturers trace their medicines across borders.

MedCredits allows anyone access to a doctor

MedCredits is the world’s first decentralised healthcare network built on the blockchain. It allows anyone, anywhere to submit a skin problem via photo and send it to a medical professional for a small fee.

MedCredits is built using Ethereum’s smart contracts which means payment between doctor and patient is taken care of automatically, so there’s no need for third parties and middle men.

A doctor has to have their credentials verified by independent nodes on the network before they can join and start helping patients.

For patients meanwhile, they download an app on iOS or Android and submit a request for a diagnosis by taking a photo, filling out a few details about the condition, submit a payment, and the app will send it to the right doctor.

It allows patients anywhere to access the world’s best healthcare for a fraction of the price.

Coral Health uses blockchain to create medicine tailored to the individual

Personalised medicine is nothing new. This approach has transformed the field of oncology, with the first wave of precision cancer drugs reaching the market in the early 2000’s.

However, the data required for this work, in particular, genome sequences of patients, are sequestered away in private institutional servers, secured behind firewalls. That’s where Coral Health comes in.

Companies like Coral Health are harnessing blockchain technology to unlock the genetic data necessary for research into new drugs safely and securely.

In future, patients could have their genomes uploaded to the blockchain, and doctors able to access the latest innovations and drug treatments for a person’s condition, instantly and securely.

The future

There are companies working across the field of medicine and pharmaceuticals, actively using blockchain technology to unlock data to help create a more efficient, safer and more capable healthcare system.