Trust-by-design: issues with clinical passporting

A substantial administrative burden is placed on healthcare professionals as they manage and progress through their careers. Identity verification, pre-employment screening, and appraisals: the bureaucracy associated with each of these processes takes precious time out of a healthcare professional’s day. Time that could have been spent on patient care. In the midst of the COVID-19 crisis, it is more important than ever to optimize these professionals’ time. This article presents the synthesis of a design workshop held at the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh (RCPE) and subsequent interviews with healthcare professionals. The main research question is whether these processes can be re-imagined by using digital technologies, specifically self-sovereign identity. A key contribution in the article is the development of a set of user-led requirements and design principles for identity systems used within healthcare. These are then contrasted with design principles found in the literature. The results of this study confirm the need and potential of professionalizing identity and credential management throughout a healthcare professional’s career.

More information

Journal publication:
Abramson, W., N.E. van Deursen, W.J. Buchanan (2020). Trust-by-Design: Evaluating issues and perceptions within clinical passporting’. Blockchain in healthcare today. Volume 3, 1 June 2020. DOI:

Blog in Dutch:  
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