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E-certificate to make health insurance more efficient, accessible

By Kang Jia | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2019-11-25 15:42
[Photo/IC]

To cover medical expenses with government-provided basic healthcare insurance, Chinese citizens will no longer need to bring a card to hospitals or drugstores in the future – displaying a QR code with an electronic certificate in their smartphone is all that's needed.

A nationwide trial ceremony of the E-certificate for basic medical insurance was held in Jinan, capital city of East China's Shandong province last Sunday, Beijing News reported.

Seven provincial-level administrative regions including Hebei, Jilin, Heilongjiang, Shanghai, Fujian, Shandong and Guangdong will launch this service in some of their cities and districts soon after the ceremony, and it is estimated that the certificate will cover all areas in China in the near future.

The certificate, the only online identifier for insured residents, can make payment and other functions of a medical insurance card faster and easier, a staff member with the National Healthcare Security Administration said.

The E-certificate can meet user demands for services such as information queries, registration and payment reimbursement.

Payment with such a certificate can be accomplished through the official app for national healthcare security, WeChat, Alipay or other certified third-party platforms.

Issued with a unified standard nationwide, residents can apply for insurance services with the certificate across regional borders.

In order to protect personal information and boost security, technologies such as an encryption algorithm, data encryption transmission and dynamic two-dimensional code display have been adopted.

Other advanced technologies, including 5G and blockchain, will also be introduced to improve user experience with the certificate in an effort to modernize the governance system for healthcare insurance, according to Shi Zihai, deputy head of the NHSA.

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