Physicians are Busy…and Tired.
Input updated patient information and vitals. Review past chart notes. Ask for any external doctor or urgent care notes from the patient. Order a prescription. Order a lab test. Retrieve lab tests. Set follow-up appointment with patient to review lab results. Submit to insurance for payment. Submit remainder of bill to the patient.
Sound familiar? This list of processes represents only a minor collection of actions any doctor may need to complete for one single patient. Imagine having to do these same steps for 20-25 patients a day. Exhausted yet?
While the list above allows for some delegation from a physician to a nurse or other administrative staff, many of those steps still require a doctor’s signature or oversight. The use of smart contracts and blockchain technology have the ability to make a doctor’s work, as well as his entire practice, more automated for faster and even more reliable workflows.
What is a smart contract you ask? We’re about to tell you.
Smart Contracts to the Rescue.
Nick Szabo compares smart contracts to a digital vending machine in his original famous example. Szabo described how users could input data (or value) to receive a finite item, which in a vending machine would be a coin in exchange for a snack or a soft drink.
Smart Contracts in the same way as above take the place of human interaction. A vending machine does not require a third-party person to take a coin from a customer and input it into the machine in order for the customer to get the desired outcome (whichever snack you prefer).
Computers and computer code can now facilitate what previously took hours of expensive, labor-intensive time by experts and professionals to do. Computer code and blockchain technology have the capacity for record-keeping, billing, tracking medical procedures and their outcomes, and complying to sensitive HIPAA regulations on automated systems.
Smart Contracts can now speed up the process while reducing the cost to physicians significantly. Once smart workflows are built, smart contracts automatically move through the workflow, alerting necessary participation from the doctor or support staff along the way, and deliver the appropriate data to the right entity (patient, pharmacy, lab, etc.) at the right time. This significantly reduces time, frustration, and burnout that EHR systems typically cause medical professionals everywhere.
The Way of the Future.
Smart Contracts allow for many aspects of healthcare, as well as other industries, to work behind the scenes without the need for as many human interactions, which in turn eliminates the possibility for human error.
Say goodbye to the extra hours spent charting and writing up orders for patients. Once these workflows are built out, not only will they allow for less error, they will eventually eradicate the need for additional hours spent on the EHR system before going to the clinic and logging on again when getting home at night.
You physicians have enough to worry about when caring for your patients. Let Smart Contracts and Smart Workflows alleviate the burden of charting and repetitive, monotonous actions that reoccur for every patient. Get back to a work-life balance that works in your favor.