Co-leading on the creation of the Health App by The Health Service Executive, Ireland has been on the trajectory of improving patient identity management services, as Maria McCann, Director and E-health Advisor told in June.

Her LinkedIn was fired up with a new update on developing health passes and verifiable credentials to give empowerment to patients over their care services.

The e-health app development has been manifested, she writes by healthcare professional colleagues Gar Mac CríostaBen Cloney, Greene Richard and Bernard Gloster and co-designed with patients’ input along the whole process.

Previously stressing that personelle and training is a first passion to drive digital transformation, the e-health app seems to allow patients to have control over accessing health services, maintain their data privacy and grant permission to use their health data as a founding principle. Solving the skills gap not only in joining meaningful digital collaborations with the HSE and public, healthcare and private partners but providing skill sets to patients to verify themselves.

The patient empowerment programme has been continued from the success of testing and tracing and the vaccine programme during the pandemic to patient identifiers across different healthcare systems, including now the e-Health App.

A cross government collaboration took place with OGCIO Barry Lowry and Tony Shannon and DEASP nurturing an “agile approach” where “continuous feedback” from patient users guided and supported the next iterations of the app, she said.

Maria commented: “It is utilising digital identity credential technologies, that support privacy for us citizens, supports access to information and will continue to grow in its capabilities.”

Patients are being shown and given the tools to manage their own care and safely submit their data. The pace at which technology is introduced to healthcare settings is a pain point to public institutions, the government and patients but convergence with identity management is beginning to be pushed. After a cyber attack that compromised HSE systems in May 2021, Bernard Gloster told the Irish Examiner that cyberattacks should be a high priority 1 as the “huge challenge” of rebuilding infrastructure after the attack is still being felt.

Gloster said he wanted to see wider expansion of digital for direct patient outcomes next year bringing together doctors and nurses to achieve simpler services that the NHS App has delivered.

While Ireland’s response from the pandemic was complementary, ICT and digital infrastructure was lacking and it is expected care that everyone, and older people often isolated by digital advances, should access healthcare services outside of hospitals through a mobile app.