In an interesting turn of events, Afghanistan’s Ministry of Public Health has agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Fantom Operations, a blockchain company, on improving the country’s healthcare infrastructure. According to a report published on 27 November, the memorandum states that the incorporation of blockchain technology would help the Ministry in identifying fraudulent medical records and medications. Blockchain could also be used to aid in the creation of medical records and maintaining patients’ files, as per the news.
Public Health Minister of Afghanistan, Ferozuddin Feroz, expressed his approval stating that the integration of blockchain technology would aid the ministry in bringing about increased transparency between the public and the health centers. This merger would bring about increased productivity and help the citizens of the country receive the best possible healthcare available.
The Country’s Failing Healthcare System
The country’s restless history of war has had a massive impact on the health care sector. It was reported that in 2002, only about 9% of the population had access to health care services.
Growing concerns by the public and the government in relation to fake pharmaceutical companies have highlighted the raging problem of counterfeit drugs. A report from the European Asylum Support Office stated that due to the rising trend in fraudulent medications, many of the country’s citizens resort to using traditional medicines. Medicine Importers Union of Afghanistan stated that over 40% of medications enter the country through illegal means of distribution.
Blockchain Initiatives for Development
In a bid to increase the urban sector in the country, the United Nations revealed that blockchain programs for urban development are currently underway. The sustainable development program is a part of the UN’s “City for All” initiative. With the incorporation of blockchain, the UN expects Afghanistan’s population to urbanize in the next 15 years.