Last week we learned that IBM, Aetna, Anthem, Health Care Service Corporation and PNC Bank are teaming up to use blockchain to improve healthcare transparency and interoperability. There are many possible applications of blockchain within healthcare, but it appears IBM and the others will be targeting the inefficiency and waste present in today’s system. Their intent is to “use blockchain to address a range of industry challenges, including promoting efficient claims and payment processing, to enable secure and frictionless healthcare information exchanges, and to maintain current and accurate provider directories.” If they are successful in their quest to improve the exchange of healthcare information, they have the potential to improve patient care and reduce costs.
This is yet another announcement in a long list of healthcare innovations that are worthy of your attention. If you embrace disruption and emerging opportunities with an open mind, you will be better positioned to leverage changes in the system to the advantage of your employees and your organization.