Ant Financial and Huashan Hospital, a teaching hospital affiliated to Fudan University in Shanghai, have launched what is said to be the first blockchain-powered electronic medical prescription service in China, local media is reporting (in Chinese).

The new medical prescription platform, which can be accessed via the Huashan Hospital mini program in the Alipay app, keeps track of all records incurred the prescription process–from filing the prescription, dispensing the medication to delivering the medication to the patient’s hands–using blockchain technology. All records and information are traceable and cannot be tampered with.

The Huashan Hospital is the first hospital in the country to integrate this service. As of now, the new blockchain prescription service is only adopted by the department of endocrinology, however, if successful, it will be adopted hospital-wide, according to Zhang Qi, the deputy director of the IT department of the hospital.

Ant Financial is tapping into blockchain technology

This is not the first time Ant Financial has trialed its new tech at Huashan Hospital, one of the largest hospitals in Shanghai. In 2017, Ant Financial launched a service at the hospital to allow Alipay users with a credit score above 650 on Sesame Credit to use credit to pay for any medical fees incurred at the hospital.

Ant Financial also has been secretly experimenting with blockchain e-medical bills. In August, the Alibaba financial affiliate reportedly sent out nearly 600,000 blockchain electronic medical bills to patients over the course of two weeks.

Alibaba’s ambition in blockchain is well-recognized. In fact, the company has the most blockchain patents in the world thanks to its financial service arm. In July, MIT launched a new fintech initiative, in which it partnered with a selected group of global financial services to work on the development of real-world tech solutions in areas including blockchain. Ant Financial is the only Chinese company selected to be in the group.

Other Chinese tech powerhouses also show strong interest develop blockchain applications, not just in finance and logistics but specifically in the medical field.

In April, Tencent announced that it is partnered with Liuzhou (柳州市) in north-central Guangxi region to test a similar blockchain-powered system that allows patients to track their medical prescriptions (in Chinese).

Nicole Jao is a reporter based in Beijing. She’s passionate about emerging trends, news, and stories of human interest within the world of technology. Connect with her on Twitter or via email:

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