If you don’t know already, Blockchain is a ledger of records arranged in data batches called blocks that use cryptographic validation to link themselves together. Each block references and identifies the previous block by a “hashing function,” forming an unbroken chain, which is where we get the name. (We’ve discussed Blockchain in the OrboNation before for banking and introduced it for RCM as well.)
Blockchain means that the live, accurate data block does not have to live on a single database for retrieval — it can and does live and update on multiple computers and databases simultaneously.
You can see how this is valuable in the myriad sharing scenarios required for healthcare environments. Becker’s Hospital Review has an informative list of seven thoughts on how Blockchain will impact and advance revenue cycle management in the healthcare space. It’s an advanced article highlighting the strategic implications, with a few tactical topics intertwined.
One interesting concept which may evolve is to integrate images into the workflow and manage those images by extracting data from them, then feeding the downstream systems in the flow. A blended environment like this could very well exist, i.e. EOB’s and Correspondence Letters living inside the Blockchain.