The medical devices industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by increased need for homecare, preventative treatments, early diagnosis, reducing patient recovery times and improving outcomes, as well as a growing importance of technologies such as machine learning, augmented reality, 5G and digitalisation. In the last three years alone, there have been over 450,000 patents filed and granted in the medical devices industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Cybersecurity in Medical Devices: Patient data blockchain.

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 550,000 patents to analyse innovation intensity for the medical devices industry, there are 150+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Patient data blockchain is a key innovation area in cybersecurity

Blockchain allows for the decentralised storage and sharing of data. When used to safeguard medical data, blockchain may store information in a way that is transparent to everyone on the network, completely irreversible, and impenetrable to tampering. Physicians and nurses would be able to access information from a single, trustworthy platform if electronic health records were established on the blockchain. Everyone would have access to the same data, and any updates would be immediately available to the whole network. This means that medical teams may be certain that the information they get about a patient is accurate and up to date.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies.  According to GlobalData, there are 30 companies, spanning technology vendors, established medical devices companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of patient data blockchain.

Key players in patient data blockchain – a disruptive innovation in the medical devices industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to patient data blockchain

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Bluefin Payment Systems 55 Unlock company profile
SoftBank Group 38 Unlock company profile
Takeda Pharmaceutical 32 Unlock company profile
International Business Machines 29 Unlock company profile
Mate Fertility 28 Unlock company profile
DexCom 19 Unlock company profile
Koninklijke Philips 19 Unlock company profile
F. Hoffmann-La Roche 17 Unlock company profile
Visa 17 Unlock company profile
Johnson & Johnson 15 Unlock company profile
Accenture 15 Unlock company profile
Laboratory Corp of America Holdings 13 Unlock company profile
Siemens 13 Unlock company profile
OptumHealth Care Solutions 12 Unlock company profile
Microsoft 12 Unlock company profile
Sony Group 10 Unlock company profile
CompuGroup Medical 10 Unlock company profile
General Electric 9 Unlock company profile
Fresenius 9 Unlock company profile
Akamai Technologies 9 Unlock company profile
Walmart 9 Unlock company profile
Patientory 8 Unlock company profile
LunaPBC 8 Unlock company profile
Netspective Communications 8 Unlock company profile
HerdX 7 Unlock company profile
Datavant 7 Unlock company profile
Salesforce 6 Unlock company profile
Nokia 6 Unlock company profile
Macrogen 6 Unlock company profile
QuiO Technologies 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Bluefin Payment Systems is one of the leading patent filers in the field of patient data blockchain. Some other key patent filers in the field include SoftBank Group, Takeda Pharmaceutical, International Business Machines (IBM), and Mate Fertility.

In terms of application diversity, Takeda Pharmaceutical leads the pack, followed by QuiO Technologies and DexCom. By means of geographic reach, Takeda Pharmaceutical held the top position, followed by Laboratory Corp of America Holdings and Mate Fertility in second and third spots, respectively.

The rapidly growing disease burden has resulted in the creation of huge volumes of data, highlighting the importance of proper data management. Blockchain technology has piqued the curiosity of a number of significant players in the healthcare business in recent years. Because of the growing interest in technology, several government entities throughout the world are engaging in considerable research operations, which will increase market size. Blockchain is exceedingly secure, eliminates the need for a third-party administrator, and gives a high level of transparency.

To further understand how cybersecurity is disrupting the medical devices industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Cybersecurity in Medical (2020).


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.