IBM launches blockchain network to bolster medical supply chain during COVID-19

Healthcare IT News

Mike Miliard

IBM this week launched Rapid Supplier Connect, a blockchain-based network it says can help healthcare organizations, whether hospitals or government agencies, address equipment shortages during the pandemic by helping them find alternative suppliers.

Northwell Health, the largest healthcare provider in the state hardest hit by COVID-19, and the Worldwide Supply Chain Federation are two organizations that have joined the network so far, according to IBM.

The goal of the initiative is to help members navigate the challenges and confusion of the pandemic by connecting them to a broader range of suppliers – those who exist outside of their traditional supply chain, who have reoriented their processes to produce much-needed masks, gowns and other personal protective equipment, according to IBM.

A more efficient supplier-onboarding process, with validation checks and inventory information made available in near-real time, is meant to help streamline the process. Suppliers on the network have portable online identity, access to user feedback, and the ability to post and manage inventory availability.

IBM is using the blockchain-based Trust Your Supplier identity platform, from Chainyard, for qualification and identification, in conjunction with...

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