CDC explores Blockchain to better share and track EHR data

It is not just providers and research organizations who are exploring what the blockchain can do to improve coordination and delivery of care. Blockchain technology has been at the center of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention at least since the summer of 2017. Now, the CDC has taken the first tests of the concept worked last year a step forward with a full-blown pilot in collaboration with industry.

The CDC test is exploring the effect of in bringing the blockchain into the data sharing system of the agency's electronic health records . The goal is to create trust in the data that is stored and shared.

Not many users trust data sharing systems because they can not "see, while data moves through its life cycle, who can access it and at what point" Askari Rizvi, head of the technical services section of the Center national health statistics of the CDC, said during a webinar at the beginning of this month GCN reports .

CDC's Office of Technology and Innovation and National Health Center Statistics have worked with IBM, one of the main supporters of the blockchain, to create a pilot program for an EHR blockchain.

As GCN notes, the goal is to "secure data and metadata collected by EHRs with customers" Allow and give the life cycle of data much more transparency. " This is critical because the CDC and local health departments share data all the time, sometimes in the case of virulent epidemics, such as MIT Technology Review . [19659002] The nature of the digital register of the blockchain makes it an ideal choice to record transactions for data owners, health care providers, CDC and other agencies, which gives all stakeholders, including users and reviewers, the certainty that data is safe and precise at the time of the transfer and allows all of them to determine if the data has been tampered with. [19659002] Find out what the health IT leaders are who believe that the impact of the blockchain will be on the assistance health.

Data transparency is strengthened to achieve an increase from the blockchain

As FedTech reported, the blockchain ledger can be used to exchange documents, information or data, but since the ledger it resides on every computer (or "Node") in the system, makes it more difficult to tamper with data . If a user in the blockchain alters the data, everyone else in the chain can immediately see.

"From our point of view on CDC and NCHS, we are looking for innovative solutions to solve our business problems, so we created a case blockchain to see what types of current and future challenges for EHR data collection can be addressed ", said Rizvi during the webinar, according to Federal News Radio.

Under the pilot, the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, which collects information on the outpatient services in the emergency rooms of hospitals and doctors' offices, transmits the data to the CDC.

"There are a number of changes we make on the data.There is a rigorous process on the NCHS side to review the data, and then we store the data, and then make a file for public use," Rizvi said during the webinar , reports the Federal News Radio. "We will be able to see exactly, while data passes through the life cycle, who can access it and at what point .There are no limitations on the frequency of data received or on their size."

According to Rizvi, the blockchain pilot provides "complete transparency" to health care providers and CDC officials, while complying with privacy laws such as Health Insurance Portability and the Accountability Act.

Woong Yoon, chief architect IBM's blockchain solutions for health and life sciences, said on the webinar that blockchain facilitates data transfer.

"Nowadays, all the separate systems have their data," he said. "Each entity has its own data: when they try to share data, they must establish [an application programming interface] to transfer data and, if there are multiple parts, the complexity increases exponentially and there is no trust, because everyone has only one limited vision of their data. "[19659002] Blockchain means that all the people involved are working from " a source of truth for all transactions. " Yoon added: "The whole point of use of the blockchain is creating trust among multiple participants, so they can really share data through the distributed ledger, instead of hiding and storing their data only on their own." [19659002] So far, the CDC seems to be agreeing. "The blockchain benefits we've seen so far is that it's easier to manage than sending and sharing data, and Blockchain seems to incorporate privacy and security controls," Rizvi said.

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