Du to use blockchain for health records

A blockchain is a kind of electronic ledger that holds a list of data records hardened against tampering and revision.

Powered by automated translation

Du has announced a pilot scheme using blockchain, the technology behind the digital currency Bitcoin, for a safer common system for the sharing and verification of electronic health records between hospitals and clinics.

The pilot scheme, to be rolled out with the Estonian blockchain provider Guardtime, will involve the existing manual process being replaced with a system using blockchain technology “that can transfer, and automatically verify, patient records in seconds”.

A blockchain is a kind of electronic ledger that holds a list of data records hardened against tampering and revision.

This will help to make sensitive patient records tamper-proof by adding enhanced layers of security, which renew each time a file is shared.

“We’re proud to be bringing another first in innovation to the UAE and at the same time help Dubai in achieving its ambitions for a healthier, smarter future,” said Carlos Domingo, a senior executive for innovation at du. “With this technology in place, patients entering any clinic or hospital can be assured those treating them will already know their medical background. In emergency situations this could save lives.”

The project was one of several blockchain initiatives highlighted yesterday by the Dubai Future Foundation and the emirate’s Global Blockchain Council.

Other initiatives include the use of blockchain technology by the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre for the transfer of Kimberley certificates to restrict the spread of conflict diamonds and a pilot project between du, Loyyal (formerly Ribbit.me) and Dubai Tourism for a loyalty points tourism scheme for the emirate.

“Blockchain is a technology that can make transactions and transfers safer and faster, and by launching pilot projects through the Global Blockchain Council members, we will be showing real examples of the impact that this technology can have and the role it can play in Dubai’s fast-paced development,” said Saif Al Aleeli, the chief executive of Dubai Future Foundation.

The Global Blockchain Council was launched under the auspices of the Dubai Future Foundation in February to encourage the generation of new services and innovative solutions for smart cities of the future.


Follow The National's Business section on Twitter