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Streamlining govt e-services, digiMC enhancements among Smart Nation initiatives

A SINGLE touchpoint for common government services and expanded use of digital Medical Certificates (MCs) were among a slew of Smart Nation initiatives announced by Minister-in-Charge of the Smart Nation Initiative Vivian Balakrishnan in Parliament on Friday.

For one, the existing Moments of Life (MOL) app will be improved and reorganised to house commonly-used government services on a single site. The app will also be personalised, so that users can receive information and services that are most relevant to them. More improvements will be announced this year. 

The MOL app currently allows parents to access services such as birth registration, baby bonus and National Library Board membership applications. In September 2019, the MOL app was enhanced to include active ageing services. The app has a total of 120,000 downloads. 

With the MOL app, the time spent on birth registrations and baby bonus applications has been cut from a hour, to 15 minutes, Dr Balakrishnan noted. Some two-thirds of eligible births are currently registered through the MOL app. 

Beyond the MOL upgrade, the government also plans to roll out DigiMC, an initiative involving the digitalisation of MCs, to the private healthcare sector in the first half of 2020. Raffles Medical and Mount Alvernia Hospital will kick-start the initiative. 

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DigiMC was piloted at the National Heart Centre in 2018, and has since been extended to other SingHealth hospitals and polyclinics. Thus far, over 400,000 MCs have been issued under the initiative. 

Separately, Dr Balakrishnan also addressed how the Smart Nation initiatives can tangibly benefit businesses. For one, the government plans to enhance its GoBusiness licensing portal and roll out more digital services to support businesses through various phases of their operations, to achieve cost savings.

In addition, the government also plans to add more features to the National Digital Identity (NDI) infrastructure, which involves building an ecosystem that allows both public and private players to develop services on a common trust framework. 

The government will continue to expand use cases for the SingPass Mobile app, a  key element of the NDI. The app, which now has close to one million users, allows users to access government services online seamlessly.

For instance, since January 2020, more than 9,000 Central Provident Fund members and their witnesses have used the app to make CPF nominations online. 

In addition, the government is testing the use of SingPass for private businesses to conduct identity verification, so that they do not need to develop their own systems. 

Private businesses can currently tap NDI servies like MyInfo, which eliminates manual form-filling and has been used by businesses such as Carousell. Businesses have reported savings of up to S$50 per transaction and an 80 per cent reduction in transaction time when using MyInfo to pre-fill forms. 

The government also plans to onboard more B2B, or business-to-business, services to benefit enterprises. MyInfo Business was rolled out as an extension of MyInfo, where businesses can log in via CorpPass to pre-fill forms. Last year, there were more than 20,000 B2B transactions that tapped MyInfo Business. 

In a separate speech in Parliament on Friday, Minister-in-Charge of Govtech Janil Puthucheary outlined how digital infrastructure built up under Singapore’s Smart Nation initiatives enabled the government’s swift response to the Covid-19 outbreak.

One example is MaskGoWhere, a website launched on Feb 1 that helped households find out the location and timing to collect their allocated masks. The website registered over 900,000 visits within the first two days. 

Similarly, the government launched FluGoWhere, a website that enables searches of Public Health Preparedness Clinics that provide special subsidies for those diagnosed with respiratory illnesses. Since its launch on Feb 14, FluGoWhere has registered over 470,000 visits. 

Moving forward, the government wants to step up engagement of citizens in Smart Nation efforts, Dr Janil said.  

As part of such efforts, the government will expand SCOPE (Smart Nation Co-creating with our People Everywhere), the Smart Nation and Digital Government Group’s citizen engagement platform to involve more citizens at an upstream stage, from ideation to design, to testing and deployment. Last year, over 23,000 Singaporeans gave their feedback on 13 projects through SCOPE. 

The government will launch a mobile Smart Nation Builder truck in May that will travel island-wide for Singaporeans to learn more about the efforts. 

And finally, the government plans to launch two showcases to engage Singaporeans better on the value of digital technology. 

One will be the CityScape@URA exhibition, to be launched in July, to display how Smart Nation initiatives have become integrated into Singaporeans’ daily lives. The other is PlayScape@Science Centre, to be opened in December, which will explain concepts behind tech innovations. 

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