Purpose: The purpose of this poster presentation will be to provide information relevant to the state of the science in regard to blockchain technology use for the transformation of patient healthcare data sharing and storage.
Objectives: Research objectives were to seek increased understanding about the distributed ledger technology, referred to as blockchain technology, and its potential effect on the sharing, storing, and transformation of patient healthcare data.
Methodology: The research team used an integrative review process methodology to capture evidence related to clinical informatics competencies from both quantitative and qualitative research, published from January 2015 to December 2020. The review process targeted the following research question: 1) What are the uses of blockchain technology in healthcare? An extensive keyword search was performed across the following electronic databases: PUBMEB, Academic Search Complete, Business Search Complete, OVID, CINAHL, and Google Scholar. The primary search of the electronic databases identified 35 journal articles; a secondary search of the grey literature identified an additional 15 publications for consideration, including one position statement and one master’s thesis. Supplementary hand searching of table of contents and reference sections of discovered articles resulted in the identification of 415 additional articles. After removal of duplications, the total number of discovered records was 255; 178 articles were excluded after abstract review and application of the inclusion/exclusion criteria. A total of 77 articles remained for critical appraisal with the use of the researcher created quality assessment evaluation rubric.
Major findings: Major research findings reveal implications for the use of blockchain technology on the sharing, storing, and transformation of patient healthcare data include: 1) health information exchange, 2) data aggregation for research purposes, and 3) patient-centered data sharing. A significant gap in the literature relevant to research related to the potential benefits of blockchain technology use was noted. Challenges related to the size and volume of healthcare data, the lack of standards causing interoperability problems, and concerns related to information privacy and security must be overcome before the use of blockchain technology for the management of healthcare data will be widespread.
Conclusion: The results of this literature review indicate blockchain technology has the potential to improve management processes related to patient healthcare data. The use of blockchain technology may lead to increased security, privacy, and interoperability of healthcare data.
Learning Outcome: After completing this learning activity, the participant will be able to assess innovations being used by other professionals in the specialty and evaluate the potential of implementing the improvements into practice.