The Public Health Blockchain Consortium (PHBC) has announced the release of its new virus monitoring blockchain.
According to PHBC, the monitoring blockchain is designed “for the systematic, continual, and anonymous verification of communities and workplaces free from COVID-19 and other viruses.”
The PHBC is a consortium of health authorities, universities, health care providers, and innovators. Its thrust is to gather and store healthcare data that they can analyze later on to help address outbreaks and improve the quality of life for everyone.
The project is called the VirusBlockchain, and its goal is to promote PHBC’s aim of helping people stay away from areas where they are susceptible to contract life-threatening diseases. This is a welcome effort especially when there are numerous reports about websites attached with malware that are disguised as COVID trackers.
“Unlike traditional infectious disease surveillance that focuses on infected persons, this is a system that monitors the movement of uninfected persons instead, with a view to restricting their return if they have passed through areas known to be infected,” explained Ayon Hazra, CEO of Qlikchain, the administrator for PHBC.
“PHBC’s virus-free monitoring blockchain can automatically identify zones with and without validated incident reports by integrating real-time information from virus surveillance providers with artificial intelligence (AI) geographical information systems (GIS).”
How will it help people?
“Those areas without validated reports of contamination are elevated to safe zone status. Communities and workplaces can maintain such safe zone status if they restrict access to anonymously identified persons and only allow movement to and from other safe zones. This method enables communities and workplaces to effectively protect uninfected persons,” Hazra said.
VirusBlockchain’s objective is to monitor “the movement of uninfected persons.” This separates it from “traditional infectious disease surveillance that focuses on infected persons.”
It also aims to help in “restricting their [the uninfected] return if they have passed through areas known to be infected.”
Where is the project headed so far?
As of this writing, the project has not yet finalized partnerships with other community organizations but is open for participation from the public. It will be able to gather data from participating communities for a presentation at a conference that the PHBC plans to hold next year.
All the information will be stored on the blockchain. This helps ensure that the data stored is immutable, secure, and decentralized. Blockchain also features a more transparent way of reporting and storing data. It is almost difficult to corrupt every entry that has been stored in the blockchain because of its consensus mechanism.
VirusBlockchain.com will use certificates from security organizations and government bodies who closely monitor viral cases. Communities can then be identified and marked to be free of infectious diseases from there.
Helping to keep hotels and resorts safe, too
Earlier this month, VirusBlockchain.com teamed up with HealthiestLuxury to develop a “Safe Zone” certification program for hotels and resorts that will assure their guests that they are taking maximum precautions to protect them from the coronavirus (COVID-19).
HealthiestLuxury, through its television awards show Life Extension, rewards real estate companies for “developing verifiable improvements in indoor air quality and other residential health solutions.”
Dr. Paul Brown, executive director for infectious disease protection at HealthiestLuxury, spoke about the collaboration:
“The hospitality industry needs certifications like this to meet the needs of health-conscious guests. […] In a world where there are threats like coronavirus, leading hotels and resorts can stand out from the rest by protecting their residents.”
Featured images courtesy of Pixabay, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, PHBC