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ONC On Blockchain Technology

by Mike Miliard

Healthcare IT News

Article excerpt

ONC kicks off blockchain challenge

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT also sees an opportunity in blockchain for healthcare. ONC, in fact, has launched a contest to find ways to apply the bitcoin-derived database principles to spur interoperability and cybersecurity.

Our take

Big Benefits From Blockchain

Blockchain technology, the impetus behind bitcoin, holds potential promise to help address security issues related to vulnerable healthcare data exchange. An ONC contest has been designed to spur innovation in the use of blockchain to address interoperability and cybersecurity challenges. What opportunities might such innovations present for health organizations?

The recent surge in cybersecurity incidents and the ransomware epidemic has the healthcare industry focused on the virtual inevitability of security risks. Because of blockchain’s ability to secure transactions across multiple transactions, the ONC and others believe it may be the answer to the vexing security issues facing the healthcare industry today, and may also serve to address interoperability needs to advance the use of telehealth and other non-traditional delivery of health services. The impact could be revolutionary.