One of the ironies in the current global health crisis is that people want, and may need, to have their health checked, but are advised not to physically attend clinics unless absolutely necessary. This dilemma is certainly more prevalent in countries which have the best access to healthcare, increasing the irony by an order of magnitude. In communities with the most basic level of care, the choices are rather more basic.
However, for rich, developed economies, the presence of remote ID verification is proving extremely useful in combating a resurgence in Covid 19 cases; this being a problem for many countries across Europe. Luckily, many of those nations are able to make use of the latest onboarding verification technology.
Covid 19 and the Rise of Telehealth
A highly infectious, potentially deadly disease like Covid 19 is the perfect motivator to introduce a system of remote consultations. By accessing the services of medical professionals remotely (either over the phone or, more recently, online), people worried about their health can often gain the help they need without having to expose themselves and others to the risk of further infection.
Such systems have been rolled out in many developed countries. In the UK, for example, the National Health Services 111 helpline was fully introduced in 2014; at least in part to take pressure off overloaded and understaffed GPs surgeries, hospital and accident and emergency (A&E) departments. The system has been a great success, and is often the first line in successfully diagnosing illness, including Covid 19.
In the USA, meanwhile, the pandemic has led the government to remove restrictions regarding Telehealth from the Medicare health insurance scheme, leading to a huge surge in demand for online consultations. With advances in technology, worried patients can log their symptoms via a smart device or other computer, receiving treatment advice without worrying about costs.
Need for ID Verification
The issue of healthcare costs is, indeed, a very hot topic in many developed nations. Health tourism, for example, has been cited as being a major worry for British citizens worried that the NHS is struggling to cope with demand, even during the course of a “normal” year. In societies which have other financial arrangements, who is able to access health advice is at least as important, if not moreso.
The recent rise in demand for these “telehealth” or “telemedicine” services has, therefore, led to a subsequently high demand for online ID verification. Onboarding services provided by established online verification companies fit the bill exactly. Not only that, but the surge in demand is driving a number of startup businesses offering their own version of bespoke health ID checking and onboarding; one such business in Sweden dealt with an increase in business of 240% from March.
Europe Leading Developments
The continent of Europe, including many EU countries, are by far and away the biggest adopters of online health eID verification processes. This is partly because those countries have some version of a national health insurance scheme, and a robust idea of who actually lives within their borders. The technology available, however, is arguably even more important in nations where either or neither of these situations is the case.