Electronic health records in a Blockchain: A systematic review

Health Informatics J. 2020 Jun;26(2):1273-1288. doi: 10.1177/1460458219866350. Epub 2019 Sep 30.


Blockchain could reinvent the way patient's electronic health records are shared and stored by providing safer mechanisms for health information exchange of medical data in the healthcare industry, by securing it over a decentralized peer-to-peer network. Intending to support and ease the understanding of this distributed ledger technology, a solid Systematic Literature Review was conducted, aiming to explore the recent literature on Blockchain and healthcare domain and identify existing challenges and open questions, guided by the raise of research questions regarding EHR in a Blockchain. More than 300 scientific studies published in the last ten years were surveyed, resulting in an up-to-date taxonomy creation, challenges and open questions identified, and the most significant approaches, data types, standards and architectures regarding the use of Blockchain for EHR were assessed and discussed.

Keywords: Blockchain; distributed systems; electronic health records; medical informatics.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Blockchain*
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • Electronic Health Records
  • Health Information Exchange*
  • Humans
  • Technology