Blockchain Awareness, Deployment Plans in Healthcare Orgs Ramping up, Survey Finds | Healthcare Informatics Magazine | Health IT | Information Technology Skip to content Skip to navigation

Blockchain Awareness, Deployment Plans in Healthcare Orgs Ramping up, Survey Finds

October 4, 2017
by Rajiv Leventhal
| Reprints
The majority of healthcare organization respondents in a recent survey are quite bullish on blockchain’s potential to help solve interoperability and data security problems

About one-fifth of hospital executives and three-quarters of payers are either considering deploying, or are in the process of implementing some blockchain solution sets, according to a recent Black Book survey.

For the research, Black Book conducted a 2017 Q3 survey of 88 healthcare payers and 276 provider technology executives, managers and IT specialists to deliver a better comprehension of current and planned enterprise deployment of blockchain solutions.

The survey also looked to measure the level of organizational investment in healthcare blockchain technology, as well as which companies are considered as having the strongest healthcare industry expertise and credentials.  A blockchain is an open, continuous, and secure ledger stored online that can't be altered. Via blockchain technology, users can share information among multiple stakeholders, recording transactions between parties efficiently and in a more verifiable and permanent way, experts attest.

The research concluded that an understanding of healthcare blockchain has developed dramatically. Black Book determined that 19 percent of responding hospital executives and 76 percent of payers were either considering deploying, or were in the process of implementing some blockchain solution sets.

This increase in blockchain awareness was marked by 29 percent of hospital leaders and 82 percent of health insurance executives having a working understanding of blockchain in Q3 2017.  Actual breaches and cybersecurity events have boosted CIO readiness significantly as compared to last year’s survey.  "Executive blockchain education has shifted from Blockchain 101 to selecting the appropriate healthcare blockchain technology protocols," said Doug Brown, managing partner, Black Book.   

Blockchain, which is emerging more and more as a possible solution that could solve some of healthcare’s core problems such as interoperability and data security, was named a Top Tech Trend by Healthcare Informatics earlier this year.

To this end, 93 percent of managed care organization respondents and 70 percent of hospital respondents report respectively that blockchain shows soaring promise for healthcare interoperability. And, 90 percent of medical group managers and IT specialists who were surveyed agreed that blockchain may resolve and expedite most concerns of connectivity, privacy and patient record sharing.  

"The most popular connectivity strategy circulating among health care technologists, and even ONC (the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT), is blockchain technology," said Brown. "The lack of technical standards for this still-immature technology is causing regulatory uncertainty while the industry anticipates explanations from federal rules at some point in 2018".

Further, Black Book found that 98 percent of survey-responding payers with plans of 500,000 or more members are actively considering deploying or were in the process of deploying blockchain, with 14 percent involved in trial deployments in some form currently.

Some 70 percent of all-size payer organizations expect blockchain to be integrated into their systems by Q1 2019, but only 9 percent of provider health organizations and systems have firm plans to implement blockchain by Q2 2018, according to the survey data.

The undetermined cost of blockchain solutions causes 88 percent of provider leadership respondents from committing to a time frame or anticipated deadline for deploying the technology.

Based on research and recommendation of both providers and payers considering blockchain initiatives in 2018, Black Book respondents who were either deploying, or considering implementing blockchain, were instructed to rank providers based on their impressions of presentations and offerings to date.

The vendors named in the survey suggest that increased awareness of blockchain’s capabilities leads to a greater understanding of the scale of potential hurdles in healthcare organizations specifically.  These vendors received positive product and services perception scores above 9.00 on the Black Book scale of 1 to 10. Some of the top mentioned and more well-known healthcare blockchain vendors in the survey include Pokitdok, Blockchain Health, IBM Blockchain, and Hashed Health.

Get the latest information on Interoperability/Health and attend other valuable sessions at this two-day Summit providing healthcare leaders with educational content, insightful debate and dialogue on the future of healthcare and technology.

Learn More



Ohio HIE Has Sent 8.1 Million Results

CliniSync, the nonprofit statewide health information exchange for Ohio, offered a year-end 2017 report, noting that almost all of its 157 hospitals are in production or live, sending results and reports to practices.

Allscripts Ransomware Update: Outages Expected through Monday

The Chicago-based Allscripts, one of the most prevalent EHR (electronic health record) vendors in the world, is still working to restore some of its IT systems following a ransomware attack last week.

Study: Inaccuracies in EHR Problem Lists Pose Problems for Risk Adjustment

Inaccuracies in EHR problem list–based comorbidity data can lead to incorrect determinations of case mix, according to a study that took place at two southern California Veterans Affairs (VA) medical centers.

Survey: 42 Percent of Companies Have Experienced Ransomware Attacks

The percentage of global companies reporting financially motivated cyber-attacks has doubled over the past two years, with 50 percent of surveyed companies associating ransom as the leading motivation for attacks over other attacks, including insider threats, hacktivism and competition, according to a report by Radware.

Allscripts Acknowledges Ransomware Attack, Says Impact is “Limited”

Health IT vendor Allscripts has acknowledged that it is investigating a ransomware incident that has impacted a limited number of its applications.

AHRQ to Fund Patient Safety Learning Laboratories

The federal Agency for Healthcare Research Quality plans to spend up to $5 million in fiscal 2018 to support as many as eight patient safety learning laboratories.