During the cryptocurrency bear market of 2018, it became obvious that blockchain technology exists beyond cryptocurrencies. This is because even if the price of cryptocurrencies were falling significantly against the USD, the technology was attracting interest from different sectors. Among others, healthcare organizations have shown significant interest in blockchain technology over the past year. No doubt, emerging technology is efficient in boosting transparency and accuracy in the healthcare system.
Integrating Blockchain Technology In The Health Care Sector
Providence St. Joseph Health, is a non-profit organization that has recently declared its interest in blockchain technology by acquiring a blockchain startup that is based in Seattle, Lumedic. Founded in 2018, Lumedic uses blockchain technology to reinvent the flow of financial operations in the healthcare sector. The company intends to increase transparency and speed in claims and billing processes in the healthcare sector.
Providence St. Joseph Health will be forming a new company with Lumedic’s IP assets and employees. The new company will subsequently create more partnerships with other stakeholders in the healthcare sector. The chief financial officer at Providence St. Joseph Health, Venkat Bhamidipati, had this to say about the partnership:
“Emerging technologies like machine learning, blockchain technology, and artificial intelligence provide us with the perfect opportunity to simplify the complexities of the traditional healthcare system. By acquiring this innovative platform, we continue to prove that we are ready to take all avenues of transformation. This would also help us redirect unnecessary spending toward patient care.”
Blockchain technology is going to play a major role in the healthcare sector because even with software like EHRs, claims, and billings still depend on manual effort a great deal. This decreases the chances of inefficiencies due to human error. The human error results in $500 billion in losses on a yearly basis.
Bitcoin (BTC) Price Today – BTC / USD
A blockchain system will serve as a single source of truth resulting in more streamlined claims processing and data sharing. For example, the blockchain network developed by Lumedic will allow payers and service providers to collaborate and share information easily and more securely using smart contracts. With smart contracts, there is no need for third party interference with the transaction process. This doesn’t just make the process more secure, it significantly reduces cost.
Unlike some other smart contracts, Lumedic made its system flexible making it possible to apply changes when the terms of the agreement change. This is a big step in moving forward as the industry aims at building more collaborative payment methods. The president of Providence St. Joseph Health, Rhonda Medows had this to say about the acquisition:
“Providence St. Joseph Health is happy to welcome the Lumedic team. We are focused on significantly improving how the financial transactions between parties in the healthcare sector work. This system will be beneficial to both the payer and the service provider.”
She said that these financial transactions are often cumbersome and blockchain technology provides the perfect solution. She continued:
“By reinventing this often cumbersome process with blockchain technology, we intend to reduce administrative costs for all the parties involved. At the same time, we would be getting a deeper insight into the experience our patients have when they are sorting out their finances. We will learn how we can make this process easier for them.”
Does blockchain technology have what it takes to reinvent financial transactions in the healthcare sector? Share your thoughts in the comment section.