Hackernoon logoStreamlining Healthcare Application Process by@Aman

Streamlining Healthcare Application Process

image
Aman Ali Hacker Noon profile picture

Aman Ali

Problems

1> During every visit to a hospital, you are required to fill a long form which enlists all the allergies and the ailments you have had before the current checkup. Hospitals have this procedure so that they can provide accurate services to you.

But more than often we may not enter the details correctly since:

  1. We might be in a hurry to be done with the form.
  2. We might miss checking one or two allergies at the moment of entering the form. And a wrong medication prescribed due to this error can have adverse effects.

These errors can arise in another scenario, explained as follows:

Let us assume that you are working in New York City, New York and you’re covered by a Health insurance company “H”. Now you have to shift to Palo Alto, California. There can be some data discrepancies when you are filling out your new Health insurance form. Even if the details are forwarded by “H”, we must not ignore the fact that transfer might delay the whole process.

2> Healthcare information of a person is very sensitive and should not be under access of hackers. Healthcare data are stored in centralized servers which are prone to cyber attacks.

In this article, I intend to solve these problems.

Motivation

Few days ago, I was explaining the need for blockchains to my friend. The following was my explanation to her:

  1. We have a system of 3 computers(labelled as P1, P2, P3).
  2. P1 and P3 are connected to P2, but there is no connection between P1 and P3.
  3. Due to some error, P2 cannot be communicated with anymore.
  4. If the data on P1 and P3 are not synchronized, then we can never trust the data on either of the systems.
  5. Now let’s scale this system to thousands of computers operating worldwide. Lack of data synchrony can cause a lot of problems in accounting, data tracking etc.
  6. Having a common ledger that contains the same information on each computer in the network is nothing but “Blockchain” and it can solve all the problems mentioned in previous step.

What if all the hospitals share a common ledger that contains the healthcare data of a particular individual?

Eureka, I have got it!

Solution

The healthcare data of patients can be distributed in the following way:

  1. We can extend this article of mine and think of the details of person as a To-Do list entry.
  2. The basic details of the individual like her name, address along with the list of allergies can be the contents of the List.
  3. These details pertaining to an individual can be saved on a blockchain and will be verified by skilled doctors from the hospitals that will be participating in this network.
  4. This blockchain will be shared by a group of hospitals/health insurance companies.
  5. These hospitals can be selected based on their reputation.
  6. The information on the list can always be updated when this person develops a new allergy.
  7. Now whenever a person visits the hospital she need not go through the process of filling the form since the details can always be retrieved from the blockchain and proper medical treatment can be given.

I intend to use permissioned blockchain. By this approach, only the trusted and verified hospitals can participate in this network. And even if the security of one of the hospitals is compromised, the system updates its data with respect with the ledger of its partner hospital(Something similar to Bitcoin Blockchain) ensuring the safety and integrity of the individual’s information.

Thus, both the problems can be solved by this approach.

The following quote motivated me to write this article:

“You can’t stop things like Bitcoin. It will be everywhere, and the world will have to readjust.” — John McAfee, Founder of McAfee

Thank you for reading my article.

Note:
This article comes under research work done at Wright State University’s SMART Lab under the guidance of Dr. Yong Pei.

Wright State University: https://www.wright.edu/ 
Department of Computer Science and Engineering : https://www.wright.edu/degrees-and-programs/profile/computer-science 
Dr. Yong Pei : https://people.wright.edu/yong.pei

If you have any questions, please feel free to send me an email. You can also contact me via Linkedin. You can also follow me on Twitter.

In order to get started with Blockchain read my article published on Hackernoon.

Tags

Join Hacker Noon

Create your free account to unlock your custom reading experience.