Blockchain is definitely a big hit in the healthcare industry. Its impact on the industry allowed the sector to promote transparency, cost-effectivity, security, and even privacy. Everything is fast-tracked. All thanks to blockchain‘s decentralized nature, records distributed cannot be tampered with. When patients need access to their health records, they can rely on blockchain to provide access to their doctors or even loved ones without worry.
On another note, patients and doctors are not the only ones who can benefit from the advantages of blockchain. The pharmaceutical industry can also benefit from this. Through blockchain, different pharmaceutical entities can easily track medicinal supplies from one place to another as well as identify the authenticity of drugs. For example, the pharmaceutical manufacturers can trace if the returned drugs from an excess inventory are expired or not. So, instead of disposing of drug shipments automatically, manufacturers can easily pick out fresh medicine and transfer them to other pharmacies instead.
Big Pharma Companies Push for Blockchain Integration
Currently, in the United States, pharmaceutical industry players, including logistics firms, distributors, and stakeholders, are pushing for the sector to adopt blockchain for its supply system. So far, 25 participants worked together to come up with a Final Pilot Report that specifies the importance of integrating blockchain in the pharma supply chain in the United States.
The reason behind the decision was because of the success of the distributed ledger technology (DLT) pilot project. Called the Mediledger Blockchain Pilot, this DLT pilot project is a pilot program being run in cooperation with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The said pilot program’s purpose is to aid the pharmaceutical industry to meet the Drug Supply Chain Security Act’s (DSCSA) 2023 requirements.
According to the DSCSA, pharma industry players must be able to trace drug supplies after distribution within the United States. With this change, the FDA may now find and remove from the supply chain contaminated, fake, stolen, and potentially dangerous drugs before it reaches the public.
Big names in the industry took part in the pilot program. Among the participants were AmerisourceBergen, Amgen, Cardinal Health, Center for Supply Chain Studies, Chronicled, Dermira, Endo, FedEx, FFF Enterprises, Genentech, Gilead, GS1, GSK, Hikma, Inmar, Lilly, Maxor, McKesson, Novartis, Novo Nordisk,, Pfizer, Sanofi, Vaxserve, Walgreens and Walmart. According to the project’s website, APhA plays a consulting role in the pilot program.
Once blockchain is fully integrated, everyone in the industry will have access to a specific database wherein every data they need is intact. All of the data uploaded are safe since it cannot be tampered with. It also allows different establishments to easily track the status and information of the supplies from one place to another as well as send data efficiently.