Health News

Blockchain piloted for foreign nurse credentialing in US

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Yesterday it was announced that CGFNS is piloting a blockchain based system for credentialing foreign-trained nurses. CGFNS was formerly known as the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools. The non-profit is the only organization approved by the US Department of Homeland Security for validating credentials of foreign qualified nurses and certain other healthcare professions. It’s helped three million health professionals over the last 40 years.

“CGFNS aims to provide successful applicants with location-independent, secure access via the blockchain to our certifications signifying their eligibility to practice on an occupational visa in the United States,” said CGFNS President and CEO Franklin A. Shaffer.

Foreign-educated nurses can securely upload relevant documents to the privacy-protected system. In addition to enabling CGFNS to use the documents to analyze the credentials, the applicants can also forward documents to third parties.

The system was developed by Trinisys which is a health-focused software company based in Tennessee in the US.

Health provider directories and credentialing

There are multiple other blockchain initiatives around health credentialing in the US. The Synaptic Health Alliance which includes health insurers Humana, UnitedHealth Group, Aetna and Ascension is working on a blockchain-based provider directory. The project involves identifying all the hospitals and medical practices, their staff, licenses and qualifications. Healthcare plans are required by law to maintain this information, and it costs the industry more than $2 billion a year.

Startup Hashed Health has also created an alliance called ProCredEx and is working with Accenture and hospital groups on a credentialing system. Delays in credentialing represent an average loss in revenue of $7,500 per day.

One should not assume all the groups compete. In fact, insiders told Ledger Insights that it’s conceivable the Synaptic Health Alliance could use data from ProCredEx in the future.

And last week IBM announced a new blockchain health initiative with insurers Aetna, Anthem and Health Care Service Corporation. One of the applications the group is targeting is up-to-date provider directories.