Blockchain in healthcare: 
use cases, solutions, & benefits

Blockchain in healthcare: use cases, solutions, & benefits

December 20, 2023

Blockchain prospects in healthcare

patient records were breached in 2021

Protenus Breach Barometer

blockchain in healthcare market CAGR 2022-2028


blockchain in genomics market CAGR 2021-2028

Verified Market Research

How a blockchain system operates in healthcare

A decentralized distributed system at its core, blockchain can be an effective technology for recording and storing medical records and facilitating various transactions within healthcare organizations. Blockchain consists of linked transaction blocks that form a shared, immutable record ledger. It relies on cryptographic techniques, allowing blockchain network participants to interact (i.e., view, exchange, and store data) securely. With no central authority, records are distributed across all the network participants and undergo verification by the network, enabling trustless collaboration.

Healthcare organizations can use blockchain to verify patients’ identities, medical histories, prescriptions, and genetic data. Blockchain-based medical solutions can grant patients complete ownership of their health records so that they can give or revoke access to their data at any time. Healthcare providers, in turn, can facilitate issuing prescriptions.

Healthcare organizations can also use blockchain in combination with smart contracts to reduce costs and enforce validity of transactions by eliminating intermediaries. A smart contract is a piece of code that is deployed on a blockchain and gets executed automatically when certain conditions are met.

Health organizations direct information to the blockchain

Health organizations provide services to patients

Clinical data is tracked in existing health IT systems

Standard data fields and a patient’s public ID are redirected to the blockchain via APIs

Transactions are completed & uniquely identified

Each transaction is stored on the blockchain, containing the patient’s public (non-identifiable) ID

Smart contract processes incoming transactions

Health organizations & institutions can directly query the blockchain

Health organizations and institutions submit their queries via APIs

Non-identifiable patient information (e.g. age, gender, illness) is viewable

Data can be analyzed to uncover new insights

Patients can share their identity with health organizations

The patient’s private key links their identity to blockchain data

The private key can be shared with new health organizations

With the key organizations can then uncover the patient’s data

Data remains non-identifiable to those without the key

Capabilities of blockchain technology for healthcare

Capabilities of blockchain technology for healthcare

Blockchain enables fail-proof data protection thanks to its decentralized and immutable nature. Patient records, medical device data, clinical trial results, telemedicine appointments, drug research reports, and other sensitive information are encrypted and stored in a way that prevents unauthorized access, modification, or transfer, and allows for immediate detection and aversion of any tampering attempts.

Blockchain facilitates highly reliable identity verification and thus minimizes the risk of fraudulent activities in the healthcare sector by creating a decentralized network for validating patients, payers, healthcare service and insurance providers, and other stakeholders. Each user is assigned a unique digital identifier, stored on the blockchain in a way that prevents forgery and catfishing.

Blockchain technology helps provide a standardized data structure and shared protocols for different healthcare systems to access and manage information. Thus, the interoperable blockchain network improves care coordination, reduces duplication of data and resources, and enables immediate access to vital information from different facilities.

Payment terms and conditions can be pre-programmed with smart contracts that make transactions happen automatically when specific conditions are met. This speeds up bill settlement and reduces transaction costs. Also, due to the unique encryption of every transaction, blockchain technology enhances transparency of the financial operations, and thwarts billing fraud. At the same time, the utilization of some cryptocurrencies helps payers maintain anonymity.

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Applications & benefits of blockchain in healthcare

Drug traceability

Blockchain is a reliable pharmacy automation solution for the drug authenticity problem, as it permits tracing every drug up to its very origins. Blockchain can be used to encapsulate information about the drug at every stage of its lifecycle, down to its production and distribution. Every block within the blockchain containing drug information will have a hash linked to another block, and every block will come with a time stamp that cannot be altered.

Incrementation of transactions in the blockchain will be visible to all authorized parties, with a medicine’s movement from one party to another trackable in real-time. Medicine consumers will also be able to verify the authenticity of purchased products by scanning the QR code and looking up the information about the manufacturer and other relevant supply chain participants. Patients will be confident that they are buying a genuine patented treatment from an accountable manufacturer, which will push counterfeiters off the market.

  • Enhanced patient safety
  • Improved health outcomes
  • Increased revenue for licensed manufacturers


  1. Certificate of origin
  2. Batch number
  3. Processing data
  4. _______________________
  5. _______________________


  1. Certificate of origin
  2. Batch number
  3. Processing data
  4. _______________________
  5. _______________________

Wholesaler distributor

  1. Certificate of origin
  2. Batch number
  3. Packet Id
  4. Processing data
  5. Temperature
  6. _______________________

Hospital or pharmacy

  1. Certificate of origin
  2. Batch number
  3. Packet Id
  4. Processing data
  5. Temperature
  6. _______________________


  1. Certificate of origin
  2. Batch number
  3. Packet Id
  4. Processing data
  5. Temperature
  6. Invoice number
  7. Customer Id
  8. _______________________
Blockchain record Match informations
 Shipment details
 Temperature details
 Pay supplier123412nBlockchain smart contract

Scheme title: Blockchain-based supply chain of pharmaceutical products
Data source:

Facilitated clinical trials

Blockchain properties such as time stamping, peer-to-peer reporting, and processing capabilities are useful for fraud prevention in clinical trials. The distributed ledger technology can be used to store and securely share documents like project proposals, research design, surveys, blood tests, and informed consent of the participating parties. This way, blockchain adds credibility to the research performed, with every document easily verifiable, which strengthens the security of participants’ data, and eliminates the issues of lost documents or datasets.

  • More credible and transparent research
  • Reduced costs
  • Enhanced satisfaction of trial participants

EHR data security

A top healthcare compliance analytics company Protenus observed 905 health data breaches in 2021 and found out that healthcare data distribution over different databases, often neither consistent nor interoperable, is one of the main reasons. Another problem is though HIPAA has strict regulations around healthcare data privacy, patient records cannot be isolated as there are several parties who may need access.

Blockchain resolves those issues by offering a unified platform for storing and managing all relevant data in one location while maintaining proper security and access control. Pieces of patient data are stored as blockchain blocks identifiable through the patient’s unique authentication ID. This arrangement also allows for sharing health information (blocks) without revealing the ID if the patient wishes to remain anonymous, for example, when participating in clinical research.

  • Healthcare data security
  • Transparent and streamlined data sharing among different organizations
  • Poof of a particular medical history origin and ownership

Cryptocurrency payments

There are a number of blockchain use cases in healthcare related to payment. The simplest example is virtually untraceable Bitcoin or other crypto reimbursement for medical services, which is crucial in cases when payers want to keep their confidentiality. Blockchain can also facilitate health data monetization for people who are willing to share their genomic data for research purposes in return for a financial reward. Blockchain can encapsulate their medical records and then facilitate transactions via cryptocurrency payments.

  • Confidential and secure payments
  • Fast and reliable reimbursements
  • New monetization opportunities

Medical staff credentialing

A blockchain-based credential verification system can allow physicians to easily prove that they are licensed professionals without having to contact every institution where the credentials were obtained. Such an exchange platform for healthcare organizations can contain credentials of nurses, doctors, and other types of employees within the healthcare sector. All relevant credentials are input into a distributed ledger and accessed by those parties who entered a special blockchain credentialing agreement. Additionally, permissions to practice at specified levels and in particular locations can be stored similarly.

  • Facilitated healthcare personnel hiring
  • Simplified job application for medical professionals
  • Reduced risk of fraud

Simplified & secure insurance

If a patient buys their medical insurance policy using smart contracts, policy details will be stored in the patient’s profile on the blockchain more securely than when stored in a traditional database. Also, when a patient undergoes a procedure covered by insurance, the smart contract will be triggered automatically and the money will be transferred from the payer to the hospital.

  • Faster insurance claim fulfillment
  • Reduced operational costs
  • Insurance fraud prevention
Current modelPharma/Drug manufacturer$$ (rebates)Pharmacy benefit managerDrug$$$$ (rebates
share)$$ (reimburse
PBM)Drug wholesalerHealth payerDrug$$$$ (reimburse
claims)ClaimsRetail pharmacyProvider (doctors)$$ (copay)DrugCare service$$ (copay)Consumer/patient$$ (insurance
premiums)$$ (reimburse
Blockchain modelDrug manufacturerHealth payerSmart contractProvider (doctors)Consumer/ patient

Scheme title: The insurance model with intermediaries vs the blockchain model with smart contracts 
Data source: — Healthcare blockchain: how smart contracts will revolutionize care delivery

Success examples

Blockchain is used in a variety of information systems and other healthcare software, proving its immense value to everyone in the healthcare industry.

Itransition delivered a blockchain-based patent platform that enables users to buy, sell, license, and evaluate patents. The solution also provides free patent analytics and engages relevant service providers from around the world. By automating complex monetization processes and promoting IP market transparency, the solution significantly reduces the costs of patent selling, purchasing, and licensing.

Image title: Patient management platform’s home page

Patent management platform

Healthcare data management platform

Patientory has developed the largest HIPAA-compliant healthcare information exchange network powered by blockchain technology. The platform allows users to not only securely store and transfer their health information but also monetize it, receive personalized health plans based on patient data, and order and pay for their medication. At the same time, healthcare organizations can leverage big data stored in the network for public health improvement.

Image title: Patientory’s interface
Image source:

Healthcare data management platform
Healthcare data management platform

IBM collaborated with Walmart, KPMG, and Merck to support the U.S. Drug Supply Chain Security Act (DSCSA), developing a pilot program to demonstrate how the use of blockchain can facilitate product traceability. After proving the initial feasibility of the project, they went on collaborating with more industry players to deliver the expanded version of the solution.

Image title: Pilot solution’s user personas and UI
Image source: — FDA DSCSA Blockchain Interoperability Pilot Report

DISPENSERDISTRIBUTORMANUFACTURERSupplyChainAnalystSupplyChainAnalystActions:• ReceiveShipActions:• Receive• DispenseQualityAnalystActions:Verifyproducts statusFlag products (unit)Viewproduct alertsQualityAnalystActions:Verifyproducts statusFlag products (unit)Viewproduct alertsQualityAnalystActions:ShipActions:Verifyproducts statusFlag products (unit)• Recall products(lot)Viewproduct alertsActions:Viewthe provenanceof a drugSerializationAnalystActions:Viewthe provenanceof a drugSerializationAnalystActions:Viewthe provenanceof a drugSerializationAnalystSupplyChainAnalystEventActions UIProductSecurityUIDrug ProvenanceUI

The ProCredEx startup utilizes distributed ledger technology to connect credentialing teams, healthcare organizations, and providers, allowing them to create compliance verifications for different industry requirements and sell or share them afterward, as well as purchase the verifications they need.

Video title: ProCredEx case study
Video source: — PCX Case Study

Our services

Our experts provide consulting and development services for healthcare organizations of any size and speciality.


Our experts analyze the healthcare sector your organization functions in and your requirements to determine if blockchain technology is the best solution in your case. We then recommend a suitable strategy for blockchain software development, implementation, and sustainable use based on your practice’s specifics.


We assess the architecture and logic, operation, performance, and resistance to network contingencies of healthcare blockchain. It is a must-have stage before further extension and optimization of the existing blockchain technology, or adoption of a new platform.


We carry out security testing to check how the digital ledger resists potential fraudulent activities. If any security issues are detected, we help healthcare professionals to restore and reinforce their blockchain solution.


Itransition designs and implements decentralized applications (dApps) as well as integrates them into healthcare organizations’ ecosystems. With our solutions, healthcare providers get a protected, failure-proof environment for diverse transactions and collaboration. We offer a wide range of blockchain-based enhancements to a variety of healthcare systems.

  • Electronic health record management
  • Medical data storage and sharing
  • Patient consent validation
  • Protected data access to clinical tests and medical images
  • Сlaim management
  • Patient billing and healthcare payments
  • Clinical trial and research results management
  • Secure and reliable IoT for medical settings
  • Drug traceability
  • Solutions for health systems’ interoperability

Our go-to blockchain platforms for healthcare

We consider your business strategy, workflow specifics, desired blockchain applications, existing infrastructure, and budget before determining which blockchain platform will suit you best and building a custom solution on top of it.

Polygon is a layer 2 scaling solution for Ethereum, making it a good choice for those already familiar with ETH tools. Polygon uses multiple scaling methods to achieve wide throughput, high transaction speed, and relatively low fees. It already has a number of successful cases in the healthcare industry and is expanding further.

Solana is a blockchain with a relatively large user-base, comprehensive documentation, and a wide array of implementation tools. Its high transaction speed and low fees makes it suitable for healthcare companies that want to innovate their processes on a budget.

Arbitrum is also a layer 2 scaling solution for Ethereum like Polygon which boasts even more affordable transaction fees but lower transaction speed. It is relatively simple to implement and is suitable for healthcare organizations that are already familiar with Ethereum, as well as those new to the blockchain technology.

Concerns about blockchain adoption in healthcare


The healthcare industry produces terabytes of data each year, and as the number of transactions increases, blockchain networks must scale better.

The healthcare industry produces terabytes of data each year, and as the number of transactions increases, blockchain networks must scale better.

Developers and innovators are constantly coming up with new and better informational technology solutions to overcome this problem. Discuss the scalability concern with your vendor to make sure they have an upgrade plan for the network your organization is using.


A majority of legacy healthcare systems are hard to integrate with blockchain technology.

A majority of legacy healthcare systems are hard to integrate with blockchain technology.

Care providers can rely on third-party integration, data migration services, and software like custom connectors. In some cases, hospitals will have to update existing healthcare systems or switch to entirely different ones to improve interoperability in their healthcare ecosystem.

Data privacy

While transparency is valuable in some cases, patients and providers are worried about data privacy in blockchain networks.

While transparency is valuable in some cases, patients and providers are worried about data privacy in blockchain networks.

Healthcare organizations and regulators should work together on data governance strategies taking into account the specifics of the healthcare industry’s innovative technologies and existing security and privacy regulations to find an optimal solution.


Some providers argue that use of blockchain technology is merely a trend and it is not worth the investment.

Some providers argue that use of blockchain technology is merely a trend and it is not worth the investment.

Like any technology, blockchain is not a universal solution. Therefore, healthcare organizations should only consider investing in blockchain if they have multiple parties initiating transactions that influence shared information. Otherwise, hospitals won’t necessarily need a blockchain solution.
Improve healthcare with blockchain

Improve healthcare with blockchain

Blockchain technology is a perfect solution for many challenges in the healthcare industry. There are already numerous highly promising blockchain healthcare projects that are either in their pilot stages or launched to the market successfully. However, before jumping on board, it is important to note that if you decide to incorporate blockchain into your practice, a part of your existing IT infrastructure and some business processes will have to be modified to work well with blockchain.

Improve healthcare with blockchain

Need a reliable blockchain technology implementation partner?

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How long does it take to adopt blockchain in healthcare?

The length of blockchain implementation depends on the project. Connecting your system to a ready-made solution will take significantly less time than developing one from scratch.

What is the best blockchain solution to enhance patient records management?

The most affordable, fast, and widely used blockchain solution is usually the best choice to enhance and expand your existing healthcare system. As of today, Polygon (MATIC), Arbitrum (ARB), and Solana (SOL) are the ones we use most often.

What is the best Blockchain as a Service platform?

The BaaS platform by AWS is one of the most popular ones with powerful capabilities and affordable pricing. However, each case is unique, so consider your requirements carefully before adopting a particular platform.

What blockchain is best for healthcare solutions’ development?

A large number of already-developed healthcare solutions are based on the Ethereum blockchain. Still, it doesn’t mean that it's best for your organization. Discuss your needs with a provider to choose the most suitable course of action.

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Case study

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