Blockchain technology is mainly talked about in the context of the financial markets, but U.S law could enable it to become a requisite solution for the pharmaceutical sector as well. The Drug Supply Chain Security (DSCS) Act from 2013 constraints drug makers and supply chain offerers to batten tracking ways to shun the spread of fake drugs and fasten drug recalls.
Within two years, pharmacies and hospitals will be forced to find out whether the drugs they supply come from drug makers or repackagers. Apparently, large pharma firms are exploring methods of agreeing with the law, but healthcare analysts found a solution to be: Blockchain. DLT might be the optimal tool, particularly when the deadline is tighter.
Chet Stagnaro, from Freed Associates, a healthcare advisory firm told Coinidol:
"The best bet going right now seems to be Blockchain. Firms should switch to the new technology due to the drawbacks of traditional software. The noumenon is definitely there."
While distributed ledger technology (DLT) remains just a concept for several industries, it is likely to become a reality, especially for the healthcare industry. The Center for Supply Chain Studies (C4SCS) has conducted many research projects and trials since last year to determine whether DLT could activate compliance with the law. Pharmacies, medicine manufacturers and supply chain operators also participated in these experiments.
Robert Celeste, founder C4SCS revealed that collecting tens of thousands of pharmacies into a single database is a difficult situation, but DLT can effectively manage this task without any difficulty.
“From the blockchain point of view, there is still a lot of work to be done, but it’s being done in earnest,” he noted.
The DSCS Act demands of firms to track each medicine package separately, while the present facility can only manage drugs in batches, KPMG's Arun Ghosh elaborated. He hopes Blockchain technology to ameliorate existing software systems instead of solely replace them.
It appears that some pharma firms are already warming up to adopt the new efficient technology. In 2017, a team of medicine manufacturers including Genentech and Pfizer rolled out the MediLedger Project - a system developed to leverage Blockchain technology to control and manage pharmaceutical supply chains.