Healthcare provider data is an essential building block of today’s health system, feeding activities such as claims processing, payment integrity processes, provider and member attribution, provider directories, and more. Today, managed care organizations, health systems, physicians, diagnostic information service providers and other healthcare stakeholders typically collect provider demographic data in separate IT systems maintained by each organization independently. This promotes vast inefficiencies and duplication of efforts, while also potentially reducing data quality.
Synaptic believes that blockchain technology provides an excellent opportunity to explore how collaboration can help transparently share information, automate mutually beneficial processes and audit interactions. The intent is to leverage this emerging technology to facilitate reaching across industry and competitive lines, creating a provider data exchange—a cooperatively owned, synchronized distributed ledger to collect and share changes to provider data, starting with demographics. This shared source of high-quality provider data could streamline administrative burden, help reduce costs, improve access to care for patients, and relieve friction between providers and multiple payers.
With reduced administrative responsibilities, providers can focus on what’s most important—the patient. Synaptic has identified many potential uses for blockchain in healthcare and will consider them for future exploration, with a focus on the goal of improving patient, provider, and payer experiences and driving costs out of healthcare.
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Blockchain is a shared, distributed digital ledger on which transactions are chronologically recorded in a cooperative and tamper-free manner. One of the best and simplest explanations compares it to a spreadsheet that gets duplicated multiple times across a network of computers, which is designed to regularly update the spreadsheet.