IIT Madras develops blockchain-based medical data system for mobile application
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Madras have developed “BlockTrack”, a secure blockchain-based medical data and information exchange system for a mobile phone-based application. This system is currently being field tested at IIT Madras Institute Hospital.
The project was undertaken with CSR support from Infosys, created at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic last year. BlockTrack aims to securely digitize healthcare information systems while ensuring the protection of sensitive personal information and medical records by decentralizing control and ownership of patient data, through blockchain-based innovation. BlockTrack innovation is now protected by provisional intellectual property filed with the Indian Patent Office.
The Android version of the app was developed separately for patients and doctors. BlockTrack’s algorithm generates identification codes for users and guarantees uniqueness across borders with very little risk of duplication. It opens up the promise of universal and transferable health information management with a strong emphasis on data confidentiality and tracking the spread of infectious diseases across geographic areas.
BlockTrack enables the interoperability of systems from multiple hospitals, institutes and healthcare organizations. It integrates the management of the medical supply chain and the proactive monitoring of the spread of contagious infections. The patient can choose to visit any healthcare facility that is on BlockTrack’s blockchain network without worrying about duplicate registrations or re-registrations.
BlockTrack is developed by a team led by Professor Prabhu Rajagopal, Main Faculty, Remote Diagnostics, Non-Destructive Assessment Center (CNDE), Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT Madras.
Professor Rajagopal said: âBlockTrack is an exciting project that describes engineering innovations that have disruptive potential to transform multiple areas. “
Professor K VijayRaghavan, Senior Scientific Advisor, Government of India, said: âThis will strengthen and enable health systems efforts to effectively track the spread of disease and maintain privacy while storing personal data in a network. “
Dr Rebecca Punithavalli, Chief Medical Officer of IIT Madras Institute Hospital, who had supported the pilot trials, said: âTechnology in the medical field is needed at all levels. BlockTrack will really solve the goal as tech support when needed. “
Shashwat Pandey, Head of Mobile App Development, added, âWe are pleased that our efforts have finally resulted in the very first healthcare-centric DApp (decentralized app) app with features like Universally Unique IDs, interoperability and non-duplicity of records. “