In order to enable a quick restart of the economy, we propose an IT infrastructure that anchors the corona status and other relevant data of a tested person in a blockchain as a hash value, thus making it accessible to all parties involved - health care system, patients, companies - at any time and across applications for verification. This will make it possible to issue people with a digital health certificate, the use of which they can freely determine at any time. Our solution will accompany the test persons through the process, starting with authentication and ending with communication with and monitoring of positively tested patients.
In the coming months, the presentation of a verifiable medical coronate test result, e.g. to authorities, employers, in clinics or at safety-critical locations, will become an important element for the re-start of the economy and for the return to a normal social life. In addition, the recording of treatment-related information from Covid19 patients will be of great importance for the management of the health care system and for the best possible conduct of research.
Moreover, in order to avoid harm to civil society and to respect fundamental rights, it is crucial that such a solution is implemented in the most privacy-friendly way possible.
We, a consortium of medical device manufacturers, laboratories, clinics, clinical data management systems and blockchain solution providers, have developed a solution that creates a verifiable chain from the provision of a medical sample, its handling in clinics and other facilities, through the process of automated laboratory testing, to submission to the requesting authorities or other agencies. In addition to these test results, a platform for professionals and test persons is provided, which enables bi-directional communication and the collection of information about the treatment and health status of patients to facilitate the research for an effective vaccine. The solution follows a decentralized and extremely privacy-friendly approach - the user can decide at any time whether his/her data are to be used.
Our proposal is based on a process certification anchored in the blockchain, which begins with the processing of patient data provided by mobile solutions from Healex and m.Doc and the collection of a medical sample. The medical sample is linked to a pseudonymous identity of the patient at the test center. This pseudonymous identity is generated by an identity provider. Here, for example, a Self Sovereign Identity (SSI) application is to be used (an approach for decentralized and data protection-friendly administration of identities and related data). The pseudonymous identity in connection with the sample will be used throughout the following process, and anchored by Ubirch in the blockchain at govdigital as a hash to ensure a trustworthy storage. Any step that adds or changes information to the sample is also hashed in this way, as is any treatment-related data that may be added to the system. Govdigital, an association of 10 IT service providers from the public sector (federal, state and local), offers this service as part of their trusted and secure block chain infrastructure for services of general interest. The verified test result is displayed inside the mobile patient tools provided by Healex or m.Doc, where patients can keep a Covid-Diary with structured vital and symptom data and receive guidance. Patients can interact with professionals (clinics, health departments) through a chat, notifications and video consultation. Data can be transmitted to Healex for establishing a Covid-Database.
To ensure that the chain of events can be verified, the hash of the anchored data can be used for verification by any party processing the sample (e.g. at the laboratory providing receipts of samples and test results. Important: The test results themselves are not anchored in the blockchain. They are forwarded to the clinic or directly to the patient, as required by law, who can now verify the results and chain of events.
At this point, a compressed version of the result can be loaded into the LISSI application provided by the Bundesdruckerei, e.g. as a verified proof, and presented if required. Similarly, the system could be linked to access control systems at production plants, airports or other locations.
The following figure shows the data flow between the relevant stations/stakeholders of the system and the interplay of anchoring and verification against the blockchain:
How does this solution relate to tracing apps such as DP3-T, PEPP-PT etc.?
Tracing apps are just as reliable as the data they work with. Our solution generates verifiable, certified test results that can be fed into any tracing app, so that no false alarms are generated. Furthermore, it would be possible to store important results from a tracing app as well as the corona test results in the blockchain.