Ethiopia to Digitize Healthcare Records with Mastercard Wellness Pass

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia is set to introduce a Mastercard Wellness Pass solution within its health information system to bring efficiency to healthcare records.

The ministry of health signed a partnership agreement with Mastercard, Gavi, and JSI to implement the Wellness Pass solution expected to bring efficiency to healthcare tracking and offline portability of health records in the most marginalized communities.

The Wellness Pass solution is an “interoperable and offline portable healthcare credential — accessible within a trusted network that creates continuity of care,” says the U.S. financial services corporation Mastercard. 

The system allows a patient’s medical data to be stored offline and travel with them on their Mastercard Community Pass chip card, which every patient receives from participating health facilities when they get their first vaccine or health service. 

For clinicians, the Pass ensures that the vaccination records are available any time through participating health facilities, regardless of connectivity, and utilizes tokenized biometrics to verify service delivery and adhere to vaccination cycles. 

The introduction of the system is an initiative by the Ministry of Health as part of the Health Sector Transformation Plan that seeks to improve the availability, accessibility, affordability, and quality of primary health care.

The partnership, announced on Friday, aims to implement the Wellness Pass technology through several phases. 

Phase one will run for 15 months and focus on Covid-19 vaccination tracking and will be deployed at health facilities throughout the country, including both urban and rural locations.

Phase two plans to scale the use of Wellness Pass across multiple health care programs, to be determined in partnership with the Ministry of Health. 

“Ensuring the equitable distribution of vaccines is critical for the world to emerge from this pandemic, and it will take a collective response by the public and private sector,” said Michael Froman, Vice Chairman and President of Strategic Growth at Mastercard. 

“This partnership will allow us to bring private sector technology and capabilities to the table to support efforts to make sure that everyone has access to critical health care and that that care is delivered in an efficient and effective manner.” 

Mastercard’s Wellness Pass in Ethiopia is the second implementation on the continent, after the launch in Mauritania.

Photo Caption(L-R) Dr. Binyam Fekadu, Country Representative of JSI, Dr. Lia Tedesse, Minister of Health, Ethiopia, Michael Froman, Vice Chairman and President, Strategic Growth for Mastercard, and Tito Rwamushaija, Senior Country Manager, Gavi, at the signing ceremony in Addis Ababa today, announcing a partnership to implement Mastercard Wellness Pass solution that will bring efficiency to healthcare tracking and offline portability of health records in the most marginalized communities.

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