US healthcare blockchain pilot starts

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Five US healthcare organisations – Humana, Multiplan, Quest Diagnostics and UnitedHealth Group’s Optum and UnitedHealthcare – have announced that they will be working together to launch a blockchain technology-driven pilot programme to improve data quality and reduce administrative costs associated with changes to healthcare provider demographic data.

The companies will aim to explore how the technology could help ensure the most current healthcare provider information is available in health plan provider directories. The current system – which has managed care organisations, health systems, physicians, diagnostic information service providers and other healthcare stakeholders typically maintaining separate copies of healthcare provider data – costs the US healthcare industry $2.1 billion a year across the healthcare system, in terms of chasing and maintaining provider data.

The pilot will examine how sharing data across healthcare organisations on blockchain technology can improve data accuracy, streamline administration and improve access to care.