skip to main content


Title: Patient Full Control over Secured Medical Records Transfer Framework Based on Blockchain
Covid-19 outbreak represents an exceptional test of the flexibility and the efficiency of patient medical records transfer among healthcare providers which ended up in boundless interruption to the healthcare industry. This public crisis has pushed for an urgent innovation of the patient medical records transference (PMRT) system to meet the needs and provide appropriate patient care. Moreover, the drawback effects of Covid-19 changed the healthcare system forever, more patients are requesting more control, secure, and smoother experience when they want access to their health records. However, the problems stem from the lack of interoperability among the healthcare system and providers and the added burden of cyber-attacks on an already stressed system call for an immediate solution. In this work, we present a secured blockchain framework that ensures patients full ownership over their medical data which can be stored in their private IPFS and later can be shared with an authorized provider. The analysis of the proposed security and privacy aspects shows promising results in providing time savings and resulted in enhanced confidentiality and less disruption in patient-provider interactions.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
2029295
NSF-PAR ID:
10471046
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ;
Publisher / Repository:
IEEE
Date Published:
ISBN:
978-1-6654-8766-5
Page Range / eLocation ID:
43 to 48
Subject(s) / Keyword(s):
Covid-19, Cyber Security, interoperability, patient medical records transfer, blockchain, private IPFS, security, privacy. I
Format(s):
Medium: X
Location:
Banda Aceh, Indonesia
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Patient health records(PHRs) are crucial and sensitive as they contain essential information and are frequently shared among healthcare entities. This information must remain correct, up to date, private and accessible only to the authorized entities. Moreover, access must also be assured during health emergency crises such as the recent outbreak, which represents the greatest test of the flexibility and the efficiency of PHR sharing among healthcare providers, which ended up an immense interruption to the healthcare industry. Moreover, the right to privacy is the most fundamental right for a patient. Hence, the patient health records in the healthcare sector have faced issues with privacy breaches, insider outside attacks, and unauthorized access to crucial patients’ records. As a result, it pushes more patients to demand more control, security, and a smoother experience when they want to access their health records. Furthermore, the lack of interoperability among the healthcare system and providers and the added weight of cyber-attacks on an already overwhelmed system have called for an immediate solution. In this work, we developed a secured blockchain framework that safeguards patients’ full control over their health data which can be stored in their private IPFS and later shared with an authorized provider. Furthermore, the system ensures privacy and security while handling patient data, which can only be shared with the patients. The proposed Security and privacy analysis show promising results in providing time savings, enhanced confidentiality, and less disruption in patient-provider interactions. 
    more » « less
  2. null (Ed.)
    Hospitalization of patients with chronic diseases poses a significant burden on the healthcare system. Frequent hospitalization can be partially attributed to the failure of healthcare providers to engage effectively with their patients. Recently, patient portals have become popular as information technology (IT) platforms that provide patients with online access to their medical records and help them engage effectively with healthcare providers. Despite the popularity of these portals, there is a paucity of research on the impact of patient–provider engagement on patients’ health outcomes. Drawing on the theory of effective use, we examine the association between portal use and the incidence of subsequent patient hospitalizations, based on a unique, longitudinal dataset of patients’ portal use, across a 12-year period at a large academic medical center in North Texas. Our results indicate that portal use is associated with improvements in patient health outcomes along multiple dimensions, including the frequency of hospital and emergency visits, readmission risk, and length of stay. This is one of the first studies to conduct a large-scale, longitudinal analysis of a health IT system and its effect on individual level health outcomes. Our results highlight the need for technologies that can improve patient–provider engagement and improve overall health outcomes for chronic disease management. 
    more » « less
  3. The healthcare sector is constantly improving patient health record systems. However, these systems face a significant challenge when confronted with patient health record (PHR) data due to its sensitivity. In addition, patient’s data is stored and spread generally across various healthcare facilities and among providers. This arrangement of distributed data becomes problematic whenever patients want to access their health records and then share them with their care provider, which yields a lack of interoperability among various healthcare systems. Moreover, most patient health record systems adopt a centralized management structure and deploy PHRs to the cloud, which raises privacy concerns when sharing patient information over a network. Therefore, it is vital to design a framework that considers patient privacy and data security when sharing sensitive information with healthcare facilities and providers. This paper proposes a blockchain framework for secured patient health records sharing that allows patients to have full access and control over their health records. With this novel approach, our framework applies the Ethereum blockchain smart contracts, the Inter-Planetary File System (IPFS) as an off-chain storage system, and the NuCypher protocol, which functions as key management and blockchain-based proxy re-encryption to create a secured on-demand patient health records sharing system effectively. Results show that the proposed framework is more secure than other schemes, and the PHRs will not be accessible to unauthorized providers or users. In addition, all encrypted data will only be accessible to and readable by verified entities set by the patient. 
    more » « less
  4. Patient-centered care and healthcare consumerism are the two most dominant ideas about the relationship between patients and providers in the United States. To identify providers’ positions between the two perspectives, we analyzed the content of direct-to-consumer healthcare service advertisements. The advertisements were collected in the state of Nevada ( N = 323) and their landing pages were analyzed for provider attributes, patient experience features, and terms referring to patients and providers. The results showed that the advertisements fully embraced the notion of patient-centeredness by commonly claiming patient-centered care and frequently using the term “patient.” The advertisements also contained multiple indicators of healthcare consumerism, although they avoided using the terms “consumer/customer/client” closely associated with consumerism. Contrary to the prominence of patient experience features, provider attributes were not common. An additional analysis of inter-specialty differences in advertising features confirmed the strong consumerism position of cosmetic surgery providers. Application of the healthcare service advertising analytic scheme developed for this study could help providers and healthcare administrators recognize how their advertising messages may reflect their values. 
    more » « less
  5. This paper presents a novel framework for creating a recoverable rare disease patient identity system using blockchain and smart contracts, decentralized identifiers (DIDs), and the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS). Smart contracts are executable code that can be written into decentralized storage such as blockchains in order to enable tamper-proof transactions of data. DIDs provide a secure, decentralized, and extensible way to create, store, and manage digital identities, while IPFS provides a distributed, immutable, and secure storage system for patient identities. Utilizing these technologies with smart contracts, we created a framework to store persistent medical records of patients. Smart contracts additionally allow account recovery without the use of any centralized authority. The framework enables healthcare providers to securely access a patient's data while maintaining the patient's ownership of their data. The paper explores the advantages of using a decentralized identity system and highlights the potential of this approach to improve the security and universality of medical records for patients with rare diseases. 
    more » « less