Spain would be the first country in Europe to test this technology. The blockchain platform will store unalterable data on the health of the tourist.
Blockchain technology would provide new opportunities not only during the quarantine time but also during the post-coronavirus time. One of the projects in which this technology will have important participation is in supporting tourism, a sector that the quarantine time strongly impacted.
According to data from the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), international tourism lost around USD 195,000 million between January and April this year, due to the mandatory isolation for the situation. A UNWTO report indicated that international tourist arrivals decreased 44% worldwide, with a 97% drop in international tourist arrivals during April.
To prevent the spread of respiratory disease, many countries had to suspend flights and tourism. For this reason, different companies proposed creating a “health passport”. This plan would be possible thanks to blockchain technology.
In this sense, the Hotel Business Federation of Ibiza and Formentera (Fehif) reported that they will implement a blockchain technology health passport project called HI + CARD. Users can use these passports in the tourist region of Ibiza. The main objective is to promote tourism in post-coronavirus times.
According to the announcement, the Hotel Business Federation expects Ibiza to receive flights with health passports in July. This tourism project is part of the pilot test that the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) promotes, called ‘Ibiza Safe’.
The Ibiza delegation of the Spanish Association of Hotel Directors (AEDH), the Spanish technology companies Tourism Data-Driven Solutions (TDDS), and Neobookings, as well as the Nuestra Señora del Rosario Polyclinic, also support this initiative.
HI + CARD will work as a mobile application, using blockchain technology. In this way, Ibiza seeks to reduce the risks of contagion and give an immediate response to possible outbreaks of coronavirus.
How Does It Work?
This application will store medical records about the patient’s health. Thanks to the fact that the application will work with blockchain technology, it will be able to store this health data so that the user cannot modify it. In this way, the airlines will know more about the health of the tourist who wishes to board a tourist flight, as part of the efforts to avoid the spread of coronavirus.
One of the direct advantages of this project is that it would allow the reopening of commercial flights but safely. Thus, Europe will be able to resume tourism. Spain would be the first country to test this technology.
The application uses a legal digital ID to create a unique profile for each user. In each country, a health entity accredited by the Ministry of Health may upload the patient’s medical information, according to Antonio López de Ávila, CEO and Co-founder of TDDS.
Some of the data that this application will be able to store are the PCR test to discard Covid-19 up to all kinds of certificates and health records such as vaccines, allergies, chronic diseases, among others.
Using this application will allow passengers to feel safer when traveling. It is also expected to help recover tourism, which is an essential economic activity for Spain.
“It is vital that the restart of tourism is a priority and is managed responsibly, protecting the most vulnerable ones and with health and safety as the main concern of the sector,” said UNWTO Secretary-General, Zurab Pololikashvili.
By María Rodríguez