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IBM to Pilot Digital Health Pass Under Second Phase of NIH Contract; Andrew Fairbanks Quoted

IBM (NYSE: IBM) will further develop its digital health tool designed to help address the COVID-19 pandemic under the second phase of a contract awarded by the National Institutes of Health.

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The company said Thursday it will deploy its IBM Digital Health Pass to employees of the water and wastewater utility Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC Water) in Laurel, Maryland, as part of a pilot program meant to demonstrate the use of the digital health passport platform.

IBM Digital Health Pass could help organizations support contact tracing efforts and verify health credentials while allowing employees to manage how they share their vaccination and health status to protect their personal data. Test results, temperature scans and other anonymized data collected by the tool will be hosted in NIH’s central data hub that could be accessed by researchers.

“As testing becomes more widespread and vaccines are distributed, it’s more important than ever to foster innovative thinking and develop solutions such as IBM Digital Health Pass, designed to support organizations in bringing people back to a physical location,” said Andrew Fairbanks, IBM managing partner and U.S. federal sector leader.

“IBM is committed to supporting the federal government through this collaboration with the NIH to help agencies return to work in alignment with public health guidance,” added Fairbanks, a previous Wash100 awardee.

In September, the NIH’s National Cancer Institute and National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering selected the IBM platform as one of the seven digital health tools for the contract’s first phase meant to demonstrate the feasibility of the proposed platforms.

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