The Health Service Executive in Ireland, set up in January 2020, was hugely accelerated by the pandemic to explore identity management through testing and tracing and the vaccine programme, as Maria McCann explains in this interview at Identity Week Europe 2023.

Maria is a director of health identity management services in Ireland. She explains how the Health Service Executive has delivered tracing processes throughout the patient flow from time of testing to getting results, and receiving vaccines.

Her remit also includes modernising the existing legislation to develop trust services and enhancing data quality. It is now ‘business as usual’ as the HSE resumes their work to embed a unique health identifier into different healthcare systems, in the patient administration system within hospitals and GPS.

A digital health wallet and e-health app are both on the horizon to provide citizens with health pass credentials to access entitlements.

The government of Office of CIO is a huge support system for the HSE within the healthcare system and the HSE, Department of Health and government worked together to develop the COVID response app and credentials. As Maria explains digital identity is at the top of the agenda for government and policy to secure millions of people’s personal medical information in the National Health Service.

The power of workforces was an industry-wide message conveyed at 2023’s Identity Week Europe. With a passion for personelle and training, Maria reiterated the need for driving people power for digital transformation and solving the skills gap in digital markets.

“People driving digital transformation is genuinely my passion”, she said. 

The HSE Ireland has focused internally on cultivating meaningful collaborations with the HSE and with other public and private partners to invest in foundational level skill gaps.