Last weekend, blockchain firm VeChain announced it built a blockchain medical data management platform in collaboration with Cyprus-based I-Dante. Called E-NewHealthLife, the platform will be used by the Mediterranean Hospital of Cyprus, enabling patients to share health data securely.
E-NewHealthLife will be introduced in the emergency clinic of the Cyprus hospital. Patients will be given encrypted NFC cards, which would act as a Digital Healthcare Passport, allowing them to identify themselves at the registration desk, use the app to check where they are in the queue, and safely manage their medical records.
Dimitris Neocleous, VeChain’s ecosystem manager for Europe, shared some details with Ledger Insights.
As with most solutions, blockchain is one part of a larger project, so the electronic health data is not stored on chain. In this case, the blockchain aspect of the solution has two roles. One is to log authorization to access medical record data.
The other is part of the digital transformation of the hospital to enable it to collect analytics. For example, when someone visits the emergency room of the hospital, they have to register where the NFC card is issued. Then there is the triage process, they are assigned to a doctor, usually there’s a wait and then they get examined.
Each step in the process is an event that is timestamped on the blockchain. That way, it’s possible to review the efficiency of getting patients treated in the emergency room. The aim is to expand the solution to other departments as well.
In conjunction with the app, the GDPR compliant solution enables patients to have complete control over who views their health records.
If a doctor wants to access data relating to a patient, they need to ask for authorization from the patient. The web app will inform the patient if someone who has not been approved accesses the data.
The solution uses VeChain ToolChain, the blockchain-as-a-service (BAAS) solution from the technology firm. VeChain is a public blockchain and hence has transaction fees. It’s not practical for enterprises to pay transaction fees whenever a patient arrives. So VeChain has a fee delegation process where they can assign someone else to pay for the transactions on their behalf. That way, the hospital might estimate a thousand visits and have the account topped up accordingly.
Among other health record projects, UAE’s Ministry of Health and Prevention uses blockchain to store healthcare and pharmaceutical data. Taiwan’s Hospital of Taipei Medical University is exploring smart health passports to share medical data. And IBM is working with Canada’s University Health Network on a blockchain health records platform.