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Batch Block: Fighting counterfeit drugs with Blockchain

vHive announces Batch Block, a startup fighting counterfeit drugs and improving drug traceability using Blockchain technology.

Speaking at the 5th International One Health Congress in Saskatoon, Canada, Professor Alasdair “Alex” Cook announced Batch Block, a British startup leveraging the features of Blockchain and distributed ledgers to fight against the counterfeiting of pharmaceutical drugs and to improve the traceability of drugs – from the manufacturer to the end user.

Prof Alex Cook is a professor and Head of Department of Veterinary Epidemiology at the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Surrey. He is also head of the Veterinary Health Innovation Engine (vHive), a research centre formed as a unique partnership between the University of Surrey and Zoetis, the world’s largest producer of veterinary medicine and vaccinations. vHive’s aim is to utilise transformational digital tools to pioneer innovation delivery in animal health.

Batch Block is a Blockchain-powered tool that will focus on improving key areas of pharmaceutical supply chains, by improving how effectively drugs are tracked from one point to another and keep a verifiable record of all intermediaries any shipment goes through. Blockchain technology allows a full audit-train of data, allowing an everlasting, tamper-proof and time-stamped record to be kept in a distributed manner.

With its verifiable and decentralized nature, Batch Block will allow retailers and manufacturers to track the origin and destination of a product at any point along the supply chain, including the current location at any given time. The product ledger will hold key properties about the drugs, including quality, quantity and custody at a point in time. These attributes, stored in a secure infrastructure, can be represented in consumer-facing applications.

With improved traceability and robust peer-to-peer record keeping, Batch Block can verify the authenticity and contents of each shipment. Any tampering detected would raise a flag recording the time-stamp and the intermediary point at which problem occurred. This can help reduce the inflow of counterfeit drugs that are mixed with genuine shipments and help manufacturers identify weak points within their supply chain. It also allows end users to verify the authenticity of their drugs, preventing them from using any counterfeits and enabling them to effectively report any packages that cannot be verified.

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