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IBM Digital Health Pass for Citizen Reported COVID-19 Testing Data

A health pass is a credential that allows citizens to manage their health status and share their information. Built on IBM blockchain technology, the solution builds trust in the data exchanged with a combination of governance and cryptographic techniques, allows exchange of data across ledgers with w3c standards, captures and documents consent, and provides permissioned-access to personal health information.

IBM Digital Health Pass:

•Results can be collected in near real time from labs, home testing, or mobile testing allowing for early signal detection 
•Allows citizens to securely collect, manage and share data from their device
•Allows for data to be trusted and verified by the receiver – data traceability 

Data becomes an active participant (not static) in the public health response.

5 min Video of Capstone Project

Elevator Pitch

Highly differentiated approach to collecting diagnostic data in near real-time for early signal detection. Citizen centricity by design.

Challenge Goals

HHS seeks new ways for collecting, standardizing, and reporting COVID-19 diagnostic data. Suppression of the novel coronavirus, especially in the absence of an effective vaccine, requires adoption of multiple layers of measures at the organizational and individual levels. Success for what will be broadly adopted depends on the feasibility of implementation and effectiveness in diverse social contexts. This solution addresses each of the defined design sprint goals.


The IBM Digital Health Pass solution is a commercial product:


Digital Health Pass provides secure, easy-to-access, trusted, and near real-time citizen health status. It is a blockchain-based tracking system leveraging Hyperledger Fabric blockchain platform to support decentralized secure verification of healthcare status claims. The privacy-preserving technology makes it well-suited for healthcare-related use cases.

When partners approached IBM seeking 'return to society' solutions at the onset of the pandemic, we used a collaborative framework to design the solution. Defining success included design thinking sessions with stakeholders, identifying key aspects of workflow, integration points, and functionality. We rapidly conducted a pilot to integrate and test with a partner and have a study with NIH.


Designed to help support entities in operationalizing data-driven policies (e.g., public health orgs, large employers, etc.).

Insights: Generate new insights by leveraging new data sets that could otherwise be unattainable due to lack of privacy-preserving technologies.

Industry Standards: Allows exchange and verification of credentials (data) across ledgers with w3c standards.

Privacy Preserving: Verifiable credentialed approach to sensitive personal information.

Flexibility & Scalability

Cloud Platform can help to rapidly deploy the solution.

Open Standards provide interoperability with any solutions conforming to the w3c standards for decentralized identity, and support flow of verifiable and trusted data across a global standards-based eco-system.

Will need to work with HHS and a diverse set of trusted public and private stakeholders to get the solution widely deployed.

Sustainability & Extensibility

Given the challenges of reporting healthcare data with multiple formats used, the ultimate goal is to drive to a national standard. In an attempt to move towards that standard we will do a combination of direct data mapping to WATERS and to most quickly integrate with WATERS, will also pursue unstructured data ingestion.

We have ongoing discussions with states and jurisdictions around use of the technology for COVID-19 vaccinations and managing and enhancing the citizen journey through that process (e.g., reporting of immunization as well as the bi-directional involvement that can be used for vx boosters reminders). Other uses are return to society applications such as live events (e.g., stadium/sports events, concerts, etc.) and air travel.

Team & Collaboration

HHS needs high confidence in the validity and the reliability of the technologies deployed and outcomes. IBM understands the importance of providing HHS with the right resources at the right time to support this critical effort. To that end, the IBM team brings a blend of technical and scientific expertise, including experts in health equity, data science, Internet of Things, DevOps, and project and product management.

Additional Comments

What Team(s) contributed to this Capstone Project?

IBM but look forward to partnering more broadly in the next phase 

If you are using patient data, are you using real patient data or mock data? Please use MOCK patient data only

MOCK data

Public (5)
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Sarah Covington Dec 1, 2020

Great project! If a user has not yet had a COVID test and they are not exhibiting symptoms, are they able to avail of a health pass or is it reserved for those with negative test results in the past 72 hours?

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Philomena Fritz Dec 2, 2020

There would need to be a health event so that data could be verified - so with testing, either a negative or positive test. Another application would be for immunization.

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keyur Patel Dec 1, 2020

Interesting Platform.

Reply 0

Sophia B Liu Dec 8, 2020

This idea has been advanced to the current phase

People's Choice Voting Extended

Reply 0

Sophia B Liu Dec 8, 2020

This idea has been advanced to the next phase

People's Choice Voting Extended

Reply 0

Andrea Pitkus Dec 14, 2020

Trying to understand if there are preconditions met by other software. (In general) 1. How to collect AOEs, from ordering provider/patient/specimen collector 2. Integrate into app/LIS or other information source for patient to be married to results of IVD test device/system 3. All transmitted to public health (ELR) 4. All transmitted to HHS (may be met by 3).

Will your approach support all 4 or only portions of above for "tracking lab results"?

Do you have app, webportal or EHR based data collection and reporting? How are patient performed tests and data collected and reported?

Do you support LIS based reporting of ELR in HL7 v2.51 (per the MU IG)? For patient performed results are they routed to the physician who is required to report via electronic Case Reporting (eCR) by law? Is FHIR and V2.51 supported depending on where the reporting occurs?

How/where are LOINC, SNOMED CT and other codes systems supported in your messaging to meet requirements?

How are CLIA testing requirements met in your system?

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