Blockchain to Be Applied to Clinical Trial Data Storage in New IBM and Boehringer Ingelheim Partnership


IBM is a major technology company, and they have formed multiple partnerships to spread awareness and application of blockchain. In a recent press release, IBM revealed that their Canadian branch had chosen to collaborate with Boehringer Ingelheim for clinical recordkeeping on the ledger. Boehringer Ingelheim is a local pharmaceutical company in Canada.

This new collaboration aims to see if blockchain technology would be a helpful addition to clinical recordkeeping. Specifically, the collaboration is meant to evaluate data integrity, transparency, and patient safety. Using the blockchain will also help the two entities examine how much of the costs for patients can be reduced and how to automate certain information-sharing processes.

Dr. Uli Broedl, who serves as the vice president for medical and regulatory affairs at Boehringer Ingelheim, said,

“The clinical trial ecosystem is highly complex as it involves different stakeholders, resulting in limited trust, transparency and process inefficiencies without true patient empowerment.” Within the collaboration, IBM will reportedly provide blockchain technologies to ensure trust and transparency around the trial process.”

There has been multiple healthcare-related projects that IBM has already been involved in, including a recent partnership with Aetna to develop an entire blockchain network that caters to the needs of the healthcare industry.

The American insurance company supports 39 million clients around the world in their health insurance needs. With the new blockchain system, the partnership will hopefully result in a streamlined process for insurance claims and payments, while managing directories and resources for clients.

Boehringer Ingelheim was established in 1885, using their platform as a pharmaceutical company that helps to develop different therapies. Two years ago, the company was worth about $20.4 billion. The Canadian division of the company was established in Montreal in 1972.

Bitfury recently announced that they would be partnering with another entity in the medical industry – Medical Diagnostic Web (MDW). The radiology blockchain marketplace joined up with Bitfury as a way to develop a blockchain platform that specifically shares and secures medical imaging and similar diagnostics information, including x-rays, and CT scans.

Earlier this month, Pistoia Alliance broadened the scope of their blockchain project. The medical R&D group will now include data sharing, data identity, and data integrity as a part of their blockchain. Much of their work with the blockchain will deal with validating the original sources, while also promoting better sharing between organizations.

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