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B. McManus

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  • OS27 - Disrupting Technology into the Next Decade (ID 43)

    • Event: e-Health 2018 Virtual Meeting
    • Type: Oral Session
    • Track: Technical/Interoperability
    • Presentations: 1
    • OS27.05 - Using Blockchain to Enable Informed Patient Consent for Research (ID 215)

      B. McManus, PROOF Centre of Excellence; Vancouver/CA

      • Abstract
      • Slides

      Purpose/Objectives: The PROOF Center (Vancouver), St. Paul’s Hospital Vancouver, University of Nebraska Medical Centre and Deloitte are collaborating to reimagine how clinical and genomics data is shared in a secure and transparent manner, and setting up the foundations for the next evolution of research analytics. Currently, the process of enrolling a new patient in a research program is time intensive and paper based. The enrolled patient has little control over their own data and the process for providing their consent to share and receive their data. The objective is to prove that a blockchain-powered solution will enable the process to identify the right patient and enroll them in the research program. The solution will make it easy for the patient to own and provide consent to share their data, enabling easy access for researchers.

      Methodology/Approach: Developed a solution with consent workflows that are powered by blockchain. For the PoC we went with a web-based UI, but we envision building a mobile app in future. The process leveraged a hybrid agile approach that provides for an up-front framing and stakeholder alignment phase followed by iterating prototype sprints. The key stakeholder for this POC were: PROOF (Prevention of Organ Failure) Center, St. Paul’s Hospital Vancouver, Nebraska Medical Centre, and Deloitte.

      Finding/Results: Through this POC, we were able to collect patient consent and store it in a transparent, secure and a verifiable manner. Timestamps corresponding to consent statuses provided an audit trail for audit purposes. The key benefit for the health / research community is that blockchain technology can be leveraged for a more efficient, secure, and reliable process of accessing recorded patient consent before releasing the patient’s data. Blockchain technology also allows for secure audit trail of the shared patient data.

      Conclusion/Implications/Recommendations: We have seen in this proof-of-concept study that all consent-related data can leave an unfalsifiable and verifiable fingerprint on the Blockchain. This is important both on the stakeholder’s side, letting them prove the existence and the consistency of the data, and on the patient’s side, giving them more visibility, transparency, and hence control over their consent. Tracking the complex data flow with numerous diverse stakeholders, and documenting it in real-time through a timestamping workflow, is a key step towards proving data transparency and inviolability, and could improve clinical trial process. The application of Blockchain technologies in the context of clinical research is broad and promising. The decentralized nature of blockchain technology helps introduce communities to contemporary clinical research, thus allowing researchers to enroll patients using a more targeted approach.

      140 Character Summary: Blockchain based solution captures and tracks patient consent in secure and verifiable manner while enabling targeted enrolling of patients in research programs

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