China is being tormented by the vicious Coronavirus, and the death toll has reached new highs with more than 800 reported deaths. The National Health Commission noted that deaths in China surpassed those recorded during the 2002-2003 severe acute respiratory syndromes (SARS) outbreak.
Apart from the hundreds of lives lost, the epidemic has been a huge blow for the nation’s economy. Amidst all the chaos, Blockchain technology is being put to test to it’s ultimate. Several instances have surfaced where the nation has utilized blockchain technology to fight back against the virus.
Insurance firms turn towards Blockchain
Most recently, Insurance firms in China are using blockchain to manage all the claims related to the Corona Virus. English-language local news outlet South China Morning Post reported on February 9 that Xiang Hu Bao, Chinese online mutual aid platform, has added the coronavirus to the list of illnesses eligible for a claim.
Xiang Hu Bao is a blockchain-based collective claim-sharing platform with over 100 million users. The platform primarily uses blockchain technology to prevent fraudulent cases and further increase processing speed. Now, the agency is giving a one-time payout of around $14,300 (100,000 yuan) for the virus related claims.
Ant Financial, the company behind Xiang Hu Bao, uses its mobile payment processing service AliPay to fund the payouts for coronavirus victims with its own capital. A spokesman commented on the matter:
“Xiang Hu Bao has been able to process claims and make payouts to participants quicker, due to the decentralized, trust-free nature of blockchain technology. […] Claim applicants can submit their supporting documents as evidence while investigation firms can get immediate access to them on the blockchain. All parties involved can see the entire process.”
Another institution by the name of Blue Cross Insurance owned by the Bank of East Asia is utilizing blockchain to manage over 1000 transactions per second to decrease the impact of the coronavirus outbreak with a medical claims app. Patrick Wan, managing director, told South China Morning Post:
“Our blockchain-backed claims service has played a key role during the outbreak of the coronavirus by totally eliminating the paper process and the need for back-and-forth documents delivery to clinics. […] This really helps to mitigate the risk of infection from face-to-face contact.”
Blockchain is also being used to track the spread of the deadly virus by implementing distributed ledger technology (DLT) in a tool, known as the HashLog data visualization engine. The tool collects real-time data with Hedera Hashgraph’s DLT to allow researchers, scientists and journalists to further understand the spread of the coronavirus and its trends over time through visuals.
Blockchain technology is also being utilized to aid the victims by a company called Hyperchain, which utilizes blockchain to track medical supply donations sent to hospitals in central China. The platform uses blockchain to ensure that donations are traceable and immutable, providing donors with transparency to see exactly where their donations are going to fight against the coronavirus.