Ghana to Adopt Contactless Biometrics in Maternal and Child Health Immunization Program

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has partnered with Gavi and Arm to embark on a biometrics-based routine immunization program in the Eastern region from October 2021.

This is the country’s first national immunization program to use biometric technology, provided by Simprints.

Simprints is a nonprofit tech company committed to transforming the way the world fights poverty.

They are building technology to radically increase the transparency and effectiveness of global development, ensuring that every vaccine, every dollar, every public good reaches the people who need it most.

The Gavi-Arm-Simprints strategic partnership is positioned to provide a unique, privacy-focused digital identification system that will support ongoing maternal and child health programs, including routine immunizations, depending on the goal of the Ghana Health Service for universal health coverage. .

The system does not require an existing formal identification document. It uses a biometric identification method to securely create a unique identifier for each individual, allowing field health workers to accurately identify patients and quickly create or access their health records.

Biometric data is securely collected using the health worker ‘s Android smartphone, while time stamps and GPS coordinates record the time and location of treatment.

When internet connectivity is poor or nonexistent, offline mode can be used to access a previously downloaded database and new patient data is downloaded when connectivity is restored.

This process is fast, eliminates the need for inefficient paper-based vaccine administration tracking, and allows patients to be linked to their correct medical records even if they forget or lose their physical ID.

Gavi, the vaccine alliance, guides this program with its immunization expertise to deliver vaccines, including for COVID-19.

Simprints’ solution focuses on the ethical and inclusive use of digital ID, ensuring it works for diverse populations with strong privacy protocols and patient protection at its heart.

The system is compatible with digital health tools used by healthcare professionals, governments and global development practitioners around the world, and can be rapidly deployed and scaled to Android devices at low cost.

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