Applications and Use Cases

Blockchain Being Used Globally in Fight Against COVID-19

May 01, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic is changing the world as we know it, forcing globalized approaches to supply chain management and economic transactions. Blockchain technologies are proving to be an ideal fit for the omni-channel, cross-border innovation the coronavirus is necessitating to provide medical care and keep the economy alive.

Blockchain solutions are poised to be among the most popular technologies adopted in 2020 and are already being used by governments from the Netherlands to China to fight against COVID-19. U.S. companies are now also getting on board, and according to the Harvard Business Review, a new consortium of corporations, international health organizations and government agencies has partnered to build a blockchain-based open data hub.

The MiPasa platform, created by blockchain company HACERA, is designed to detect COVID-19 carriers and infections hotspots globally, both quickly and precisely. The company has partnered with the World Health Organization (WHO), IBM, Oracle, Microsoft and a number of government and health agencies to build out an open data hub on the platform. MiPasa will ultimately share information among individuals, hospitals and authorities securely, to help with public health analysis.

“We have a huge community of organizations supporting and helping — instead of resistance at every step of the decision making process we are getting uplifted and pushed forward every step of the way,” said Jonathan Levi, co-founder and CEO of HACERA, about the positive response to MiPasa.

The platform works by creating digital identifiers that may not be linked back to the data source. The identifiers prevent the sharing of personally identifiable information, and MiPasa works to validate the data by reconciling disparate data sources. These may include information from WHO, the CDC and other agencies.

The Honduran government is also taking advantage of blockchain in the fight against the coronavirus and is working with Toronto startup Emerge. The company's Civitas app enables medical professionals to share confidential data, allowing patients to travel to care facilities as needed despite a stay at home order. The app lets police verify if a patient has travel rights without the need to access the person's medical record. It also enables the government to track real-time data about the distribution of the infection.

The United Arab Emirates is also taking advantage of blockchain-based systems during the COVID-19 pandemic. The country's Ministry of Community Development is using digital identities created through blockchain and chat systems to digitally authenticate official certificates and other documents. This enables individuals to work from home and adhere to shelter in place mandates.

“This step confirms the ministry’s commitment to ensure the continuity and flexibility of all government services in light of the directives of the smart government to reduce the spread of COVID-19,” said Hessa Essa Buhumaid, Minister of Community Development for the UAE.

And in the U.S., retired Air Force Colonel James Allen Regenor has been working on a blockchain-powered platform for buying and selling traceable 3-D printed parts since 2013. The platform was built to enable a decentralized manufacturing process through which customers can order and print parts for medical devices and more.

After COVID-19 struck, Regenor founded his Rapid Medical Parts company in March. He quickly put together a global network of partners and was awarded a Pentagon contract to convert sleep apnea machines to ventilators within 12 days. Regenor's company will print additional parts required for the conversion, and the process will cost one-tenth the price of a new ventilator. He plans to have the units in hospitals by mid-May.

To provide information about how blockchain is aiding the fight against COVID-19 and ushering in a new global supply chain and economic practices, TMC is hosting The Blockchain Event at the Miami Beach Convention Center in Miami, FL from June 22-25, 2021. Colocated with ITEXPO, the event will offer dedicated content about how blockchain is disrupting and transforming a variety of industries while also creating a new global economy.

Edited by Maurice Nagle



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