Singapore turns COVID-19 into an opportunity to drive healthtech sector, says GlobalData

Singapore has turned the COVID-19 pandemic into an opportunity to improve its current healthcare workflow and further expand the healthtech sector by innovating new solutions to provide better access and care to people, says GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

The successful adoption of technology to combat and contain the COVID-19 pandemic effectively has, in part, helped the country retain its top position in the IMD-SUTD Smart City Index for the second year in 2020.

The launch of mobile app ‘Trace Together’ for contact tracing is a classic example of how Singapore used technology to contain the spread of infection. Covid GoBusiness portal, COVID-19 Situation Report, FluGoWhere, WhatsApp and MaskGoWhere are some other examples of the digital tools developed by Singapore government to combat the virus infection.

GlobalData’s report, ‘CountryFocus: Healthcare, Regulatory and Reimbursement Landscape – Singapore’, reveals that telemedicine, electronic health records, patient solutions, medical diagnostics, health management solutions, personal health and fitness and medical education are some of the areas in Singapore’s healthcare sector, where technology plays a key role.

Pratibha Thammanabhatla, Medical Devices Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “There has been a significant rise in the adoption of digital health technologies such as telehealth and remote monitoring in Singapore due to the pandemic and increasing aging population.”

Recently, the Government Technology Agency of Singapore (GovTech) and the Ministry of Health (MOH) have established HealthCerts, a new standard for issuing of digital COVID-19 test result certificates. HealthCerts is a combination of cryptographic hashes, blockchain technology, privacy protection and identity proof.

Ms Thammanabhatla concludes: “The introduction of HealthCerts demonstrates the commitment of Singapore government in deploying technology to arrest the further spread of COVID-19. This also highlights the aim of Singapore to strengthen the healthtech sector and improve its preparedness for any future health crises.

“The country is enhancing its tech talent in health care sector by offering required training and skills to improve patient service by increasing the digital patient-physician engagement in the post COVID-19 period. However, it is important to pay special attention to data privacy and prevent cybersecurity breaches.”

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