At its core, Blockchain is data storage and retrieval. Typically the data is assumed to be a transaction. Hyperledger has expanded that assumption to include assets, accounts, permissions, etc. But what about images (or other large files)? The prevailing opinion seems to be to use the Blockchain to hold the pointer to the actual location somewhere else. This is fairly standard in general database design.
But should that be the case with Hyperledger? Perhaps the benefits of Blockchain encryption, security, immutability, etc., might outweigh the standard arguments for not storing images in a database. I wanted to explore this idea further, so I first decided to look at ‘can we’, and then look at ‘should we’.
Belltane has published a Proof of Concept Hyperledger application demonstrating the use of Blockchain to allow Payors, Hospitals, Regulators, and Medical Schools to share a common distributed ledger recording the payment eligibility status of physicians in a Healthcare Provider Directory.
This very basic proof of concept seeks to illustrate the use of Hyperledger Blockchain to enable a distributed ledger application that ensures data access security. User read and write access permissions are delivered in the SmartContract applied to the Blockchain. Medical Schools create physicians, Regulators create and edit Medical Schools and Hospitals, Hospitals edit physician privileges status and Payors can check eligibility status of Hospitals and Physicians before settling payment.
This proof of concept does not seek to closely approximate the full requirements of a Healthcare Provider Directory. However we have loaded almost 200,000 Physicians, 10,000 Hospitals, 400 Medical Schools, and 50 Regulators into the Blockchain database. Each Hospital, Medical School and Regulator has 2 user names each, totaling almost 10,000 user accounts. In our security scenario, each entity user is limited to the appropriate visibility and write permissions based on its type and location. Regulators can only access physicians and entities in its state, for example.
Belltane is pleased to announce it has joined the IBM partner network. IBM’s global leadership in advanced disruptive technologies like AI (Watson) and Blockchain (Hyperledger) will allow Belltane to provide consultative and implementation services for our clients as they analyze, prepare for, and adopt these new applications and services.
IBM’s Bluemix development platform provides Belltane with a quick and easy ability to develop and deploy proof-of-concepts, pilots and production implementations of a large range of IBM products. Belltane is actively developing components and prototypes for utilizing Hyperledger in an IBM Bluemix environment.
Belltane has also joined the IBM Blockchain Ecosystem. The IBM Blockchain Ecosystem brings together a range of people and companies interested in building and leveraging blockchain solutions and provides them with special benefits and resources to tap into this exciting new space.
Belltane is working hard to stay on top of these new and rapidly evolving technologies as they move from idea to reality and ensure our clients are provided with the most advanced capabilities and services. Belltane employees have achieved the highest offered IBM Hyperledger certification level.
Stay tuned for upcoming blogs, newsletters, videos, and webinars on Hyperledger, and contact us directly for specific information requests or assistance in developing strategies and solutions for accommodating Hyperledger into your organization.