Digital health passports to verify travelers’ COVID-19 test results, Singapore Firm

Digital health passports to verify travelers’ COVID-19 test results, Singapore Firm

SINGAPORE: Singapore firms have developed digital health passports that can verify travelers’ COVID-19 test results, as the country gradually reopens its borders with safe management measures in place.

Tech firm Affinidi mentioned it’s working with government agencies and private sector partners on trials for inbound travelers, whereas two different companies mentioned they were concerned in pilots for the Singapore-Hong Kong air travel bubble, which was supposed to start on Nov 22 however has since been postponed.


Digital health passports allow clinics and hospitals to share healthcare data throughout borders in a safe method, using technology like blockchain.

After potential travelers take their COVID-19 test at a healthcare supplier working with these apps, builders issue a QR code with the check result, which travelers present to immigration authorities. 

When scanned, officers can see particulars similar to whether or not the laboratory is on the destination nation’s whitelist, what type of test was taken, and whether or not it was done within the required timeframe.

“So we really work immediately with the clinics, hospitals, and laboratories, the place they send data to us securely both through an API or through our cloud-based solution, and we take that data, make it into a verifiable document, and put it into the hands of the individual of their digital health passport,” mentioned Mr. Quah Zheng Wei, co-founder, and CEO of Accredify 

That is to ensure that check results haven’t been tampered with whereas ensuring that delicate private health data are shared only with these the person chooses to share them with.

This compares to choices like opening up centralized databases of medical data to countries around the world, which brings up issues of data privacy and will potentially make healthcare providers targets for cyberattacks.


Accredify has 80 labs and clinics in Singapore and Hong Kong on board, through a partnership with private healthcare provider Parkway Pantai.

Next yr, it goals to expand its network to about 440 clinics in Singapore that has been authorized to offer COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction tests, and it is expecting extra to come on board as testing gets ramped up.

Another digital health passport, ICC AOKpass, has access to a global network of about 73,000 medical suppliers which might be usually audited by its partner International SOS.

“It offers a go-to network, especially once we’re coping with business clients because lots of them are already serviced by this network. So the referral to the top quality clinic … that already exists in many ways via a network like that,” says Dr. Chester Drum, co-founder of ICC AOKpass.

“That network is present in nearly every nation. And that is the benefit – if you’re in a sparsely populated nation in Africa, or in case you’re in the middle of London, there’s access no matter the place you go.”

With at least 10 digital health passports being developed by airlines, multinational organizations, and personal entities, a key problem shall be interoperability – what occurs when a traveler turns up at an immigration counter with an app the officer has never seen before?

“There are numerous providers in the present day which might be serving to you to issue these test results in a way that’s verifiable. The issue then is that there are many totally different standards, which the immigration officer or the (airline) check-in counter might want to verify towards,” mentioned Mr Nicholas Foo, who does business growth at Affinidi.

Drawing comparability with credit card cost systems, Mr Foo mentioned it’s unlikely {that a} single kind of digital health passport will dominate the scene. Instead, what’s wanted is “a single terminal (that) can learn everything”.

To assist achieve this, Affinidi has constructed an internet software it calls the Universal Verifier.

“We are going to work with all these totally different standard providers to be able to learn the QR codes and show the result in the same way to the immigration officer. This helps to save a lot of time, and the immigration officer doesn’t should learn different types of standards,” mentioned Mr Foo.

Affinidi mentioned extra details about trials in Singapore shall be revealed quickly. It has also received curiosity from different countries and is participating in them to see how it can scale up the answer.

“The vision is that we’ll try this in the area first, but hopefully increase this to change into an extra world solution within the close to the time period,” mentioned Mr Foo.

Affinidi at the moment has eight digital health passport suppliers on board, together with Accredify and AOKpass. Others include Data Catalyst, NextID, Collinson, and 3DCerts.


In keeping with the solution providers, these platforms have a potential past international journey.

“For example, once we spoke to counterparts in Malaysia, in Indonesia, there are requirements for a negative COVID-19 check to be confirmed for you to cross between states,” mentioned Mr Foo.

“Negative COVID-19 test results are also required for the purposes of employment … these are very real-life functions.”

Such systems may help gain entrance into events.

Suppliers mentioned these options can be simply tailored if proof of COVID-19 vaccinations turns into a requirement in the future.

“That is finally a recreation of confidence, and the extra confidence you have, the more keen you are to open up borders. (Having) the boldness that the individuals (who) are traveling to your country have these digital certs will allow us to open the borders more quickly,” mentioned Mr Foo.