myGP – the UK’s largest independent GP booking and healthcare management app that connects patients with primary care – has announced its intention to provide the people in England with a simple, clear means of communicating their verified vaccination status, via their Smartphone.
The new vaccination status feature will display, within the patient profile page of the myGP app, whether or not a patient is sufficiently protected from COVID-19; illustrated via a few personal details and a simple green tick, which will appear 21 days following the final vaccine dose, when a patient is considered protected from the virus. This ‘tick’ will act as a clinically assured means of proving one’s vaccination status, displayed in real-time, generated directly from a patient’s medical record.
myGP – home to the myGP TICKet feature – is developed by Hammersmith-based iPLATO Healthcare. Currently available to patients at 97 percent of England’s GP practices, myGP has spent years working alongside the NHS to gain NHS accreditation. As a result, the app already enables around two million patients in England to view their medical records, request repeat prescriptions, request GP appointments, and access other complementary healthcare services. More than 200,000 patients in England have accessed their medical records via the app in just the last two months.
Economic recovery, at capacity
Currently planned for release in February 2021, and dependent upon availability of the clinical data, the myGP TICKet could allow businesses whose viability depends upon operating at capacity – such as the arts and hospitality sectors – the ability to open either full or part-time to vaccinated individuals, without the need to observe strict social distancing rules. In addition, the technology will reduce the administrative burden on GPs, who will likely be inundated with requests for verification of vaccination status as people begin to return to everyday life around the country.
Since the start of the pandemic, myGP has regularly undertaken patient research, to gauge feelings and intentions regarding their health, access to primary care, and their intentions regarding the Covid-19 vaccine. Last week, upon learning that a vaccine had been approved, myGP asked 2,000 adults if they intend to have the new vaccine, of which 31 percent said no. However, of this group, 23 percent said they could be swayed to have the vaccine if it meant they could attend live events and other activities without strict social distancing measures in place.
Tobias Alpsten, the innovator behind myGP TICKet and Founder and CEO of iPLATO Healthcare and myGP explains why it could be a game-changer for the UK: “Not only does our research tell us that the public would respond positively to this kind of incentive; we believe that our solution can provide an economic lifeline to industries who have been crippled by the pandemic.
Further, this innovation will absolutely relieve administrative burden on GPs by simplifying an individual’s access to his or her own vaccination status. The myGP TICKet means that patients will not have to contact their GPs, get certificates printed, apply for vaccination passports, or other long-winded solutions. Simply download the myGP app, register, and it’s done.”
Katie Coull, Artistic Director of Charity ‘Artists for Essential Workers’ (AFEW), comments on why the myGP TICKet could be game-changing for the arts adds: “Being unable to operate at capacity has been absolutely crippling for artists and arts venues alike. The ability to fill a venue to capacity, even just part of the time, would make a world of difference to the organisations who provide Britain’s cultural lifeblood. We are fully in support of anything that can open our doors earlier than planned.”
James Balfour, CEO of 1Rebel, one of the UK’s leading fitness brands, explains why the myGP TICKet will help bring the country’s fitness industry back, says: “The fitness industry has been faced with unique struggles during the pandemic, due to social distancing requirements. Exercise has been a buzz word during the pandemic, but gyms have been one of the casualties of the lockdowns and tier-systems, despite low transmission rates, and the well-known physical and the mental health benefits it brings. Any solution that will help group exercise in particular get back to business safely, will be very welcome by 1Rebel. We can’t wait to get back to helping boost the nation’s health; including having a positive impact on England’s economy.”