Russian healthcare digitalization bill for remote patients includes biometrics for authentication

healthcare patient identity governance biometric authentication

Members of Russia’s Federation Council and Parliament (Duma) have drafted a bill to digitalize healthcare with biometric authentication for more citizens to benefit from medical care, especially during the coronavirus outbreak, the government announced.

The Bill introduces a number of legal changes to federal legislation that will allow doctors to use telemedicine technologies for remote consultations, as well as the use of advanced identification and authentication through biometric data, electronic signatures and other identifiers established by the medical facility.

According to Deputy Chairman of the Federation Council Andrei Turchak, digitalization of health is extremely important under current circumstances where many people have to be tested for coronavirus.

Russian law does not allow doctors to diagnose or prescribe treatment to patients during a remote consultation, while in other countries doctors are legally allowed to state a preliminary diagnosis especially in the case of the flu or respiratory infections. Turchak explained the bill wants to change this situation and allow doctors in Russia to conduct physical examinations, diagnose a patient and prescribe treatment remotely.

Another member of Parliament involved in drafting the bill, Irina Rukavishnikova, said in a prepared statement that this initiative would also increase accessibility and convenience, and it would help doctors in Russia reach people in inaccessible areas.

The Russian government also recently unveiled plans to identify foreign visitors and migrant workers with biometrics.

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