Enabling a health care workforce with Blockchain

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Lets look at the worldwide health care marketplace. Established healthcare markets already have a shortfall of qualified workers to meet their current demands. According to research this demand will increase dramatically over the next decade.

The conundrum is how to fill the needs of the marketplace with care workers who have attained the right qualifications , have met the exacting standards of regulation, revalidation, practice hours etc. More specifically if a care worker has completed their qualification abroad, how does that course compare with the standards in place in the country to which they wish to work.

Its complicated, high profile and critical. The public needs the assurance that the person undertaking their healthcare is properly qualified and has met the exacting standards of the regulator.

At present each country has taken great efforts to create regulatory bodies that are ultimately answerable to their governments. In the main the business processes of regulation are broadly similar however there has been a slow uptake to merge these processes with a common set of guidelines backed by a common software solution.

Ultimately a care worker, who in some cases has completed a range of qualifications at considerable expense, need the flexibility that they can take their qualification, work experience, references etc and travel to different countries to work. They need to join the register of that country quickly, easily and cheaply, while employers need to fill vacancies, just as quick, with qualified and experienced individuals in order to provide a high standard of care to users of healthcare services.  

With this background what of the future? The answer is to store this historical information using the Blockchain technology to create a digital ledger which can be accessed securely globally.

Around the world governments, and more specifically the European Union, have been slow to recognise the importance of Blockchain within the healthcare marketplace but they have undertaken a range of studies. Paul DeRaeve has publish a report on the “Blockchain support in the continuity of care” which makes interesting reading. He clearly articulates the benefits to all concerned but he does highlight the difficulty and expense in a developing a delivery model.

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/329673315_Blockchain_support_to_continuity_of_care

Perhaps the governing bodies are looking at the problem from the wrong direction. Instead of creating a Blockchain ledger that regulators can interface with, the solution might be to find a regulatory solution with Blockchain in it.

Fortesium’s RegulatorOnline (which is already used by the largest health care regulator in the world with over 700,000 practitioners) product has this functionality built in allowing Regulators the opportunity to store their registrants information in a Blockchain ledger. This means that should a registrant want to work in a different country their information is readily available. Indeed the business advantages would be increased greatly if a range of regulators in a common area adopted the same standards of software integration underpinned by the Blockchain ledger. If this was achievable then the onboarding of healthcare workers could be reduced by several months (in some cases over 6 month) to a few weeks, enabling the workforce and healthcare organisations to provide a better standard of care.

So the ultimate goal is to provide services that allow healthcare workers, across the world, to move countries and to register fast.  Allowing the healthcare sector to benefit from increases in the availability of qualified and experience healthcare workers.  The first step would be for Regulators to consider the RegulatorOnline product from Fortesium.

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