Blockchain Changes Radiology

Blockchain technology has a significant impact on the medical imaging industry, according to a new analysis published in the Journal of Digital Imaging.

Dr Francesco Verde, department of advanced biomedical sciences at the University of Naples:

“The promise for healthcare is that this technology can be used to store and manage important medical data in a secure fashion”.

Developments with blockchain technology come as electronic health records (EHRs) are growing more and more important in today’s healthcare landscape, and the authors noted that EHRs are “the main field of healthcare research promoting blockchain implementation” at this time.

These are three potential ways blockchain could impact radiology moving forward:

1. Empowering patients

Thanks to advances in blockchain, researchers have speculated, patients may one day truly “own their imaging data and control healthcare provider access privileges.” It would put an end to handing patients CDs full of images, make accessing one’s images a breeze and make all data much more secure.

2. Improve education

Blockchain technology could make an impact on radiology trainees as well, helping instructors monitor the progress of their students and track their development over time. Verde et al. added that it could also be used for the opposite purpose: assessing “faculty member competencies.”

3. Lead to better research

Creating massive databases of imaging data is crucial for the development of radiomics and AI applications, the authors observed, and it’s an especially difficult task for researchers.

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