Two British Hospitals Makes use of Blockchain Technology to Track COVID-19 Vaccines
January 19, 2021 5:24 PM
Blockchain technology comes in handy for two British hospitals who are using the technology to keep records on the storage and supply of temperature-sensitive COVID-19 vaccines.
In central England’s South Warwickshire and Stratford-upon-Avon the city best known for being Shakespeare’s birthplace and hometown, are expanding their use of a distributed ledger, a part of blockchain, from tracking vaccines and chemotherapy drugs to monitoring fridges storing COVID-19 vaccines at the accurate temperature.
The tech aims to bolster record-keeping and data-sharing across supply chains, said Everyware, which monitors vaccines and other treatments for Britain’s National Health Service (NHS), and Texas-based ledger Hedera Hashgraph, owned by firms including Alphabet’s Google and IBM, Tata communications, LG Electronics, Boeing in a statement.
Hedera’s Hashgraph digital ledger does not use the same kind of blockchain system that Bitcoin and Ethereum do. Instead it uses a different kind of mathematical system, called a directed acylic graph.
One benefit of this system is that it does not require nodes in the network that stores the digital ledger to solve complex mathematical puzzles unlike cryptocurrency-based blockchains, which is why Hedera offers such a low-cost per piece of information added to a ledger and can process transactions so rapidly.
“We can absolutely verify the all data that we’ve collected from every single device,” Everyware’s Tom Screen said in an interview. “We make sure that data is accurate at source, and after that point we can verify that it’s never been changed, it’s never been tampered with.”
Firms from finance to commodities have invested millions of dollars to develop blockchain, a digital ledger that allows secure and real-time data recordings, in the hope of cost cuts and efficiency gains.
Results have been mixed, though, with few projects achieving the revolutionary impact heralded by proponents.
Everyware’s Screen said it while it would be possible to monitor the vaccines without blockchain, manual systems would raise the risk of mistakes.