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Digital birth certificates: Modernizing citizen services in Abu Dhabi

In Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates, Accela is demonstrating how local government can leverage a highly flexible digital platform to deliver services more effectively.

The Department of Health, which regulates the healthcare sector in the emirate, has announced that birth certificates for newborns can now be issued digitally through “TAMM,” the Abu Dhabi Government Services platform.

For many localities around the world, birth certificates are the last bastion of the paper-based process. Parents may have to contact multiple agencies and pull together masses of documentation to obtain this vital record. Digital birth certificates are another step toward helping governments meet citizen expectations in a digital world.

The flexibility of Accela’s platform makes it possible

Leveraging Accela, the Abu Dhabi government has streamlined the birth certificate application process. When a child is born, parents receive a prompt from the healthcare facility. They then get registration and login procedures and are prompted to upload the required documents and pay the required fees to receive a digital copy of their newborn’s birth certificate. Simple, paperless, and streamlined.

The new digital system went live in December 2021 and is available to be leveraged for births across the emirate. Parents seeking certificates for previous birth dates, issued from any of the emirate’s hospitals, can also make use of the new service.

In addition, Abu Dhabi is achieving a higher level of security as a result of digitizing its birth certificate issuance process. In the past, parents had to go through multiple government agencies to get the paperwork done. This streamlined and automated digital system tightens up that workflow, leaving fewer opportunities for error or fraud.

No limit to digital possibilities

Abu Dhabi’s digitization of birth certificates is just one example of what can be achieved through cloud-based services. Elsewhere in the region, Accela is partnering with other governments looking to apply a flexible civic-tech solution to their unique citizen-service needs.

“What excites us the most with such initiatives is the direct impact Accela is having on economies, businesses, and citizens of countries and cities all over the globe. In the last 18 months alone, Accela enabled wine export regulation in Australia, digital customs, and border control in the UAE. Most recently Accela partnered with one of the most iconic tourist destinations in the world on a nationwide initiative to transform the tourism industry through improved regulation and lighting fast access to services across all areas of hospitality,” said Khaled Jaouni, Accela’s managing director, international.

Modernized solutions support the end user, providing the kind of seamless online access that people increasingly expect, based on their private-sector interactions. This modernized approach also helps to reduce the cost to government of providing services.

A peek into the future of a new, paperless generation

Forward-looking city and state authorities can look to Abu Dhabi’s success as an indication of what can be achieved when a robust civic-engagement platform is put to use. In fact, many government processes in the United Arab Emirates already are effectively paperless — from COVID-19 tests and vaccine cards. Digital birth certificates represent a next step forward in the local government’s effort to operate in a way that is consistent with the lifestyle and identity of the rising generation.

State and local governments everywhere are looking to leverage innovation and technological advancement as the way to improve citizen service. Abu Dhabi’s efforts show what is possible: a world where modernized solutions drive down cost while also making things more convenient — one where a “metaverse” is just the tip of the iceberg.



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About The Author

Since 1999 Accela has provided market-leading software solutions that empower state and local governments worldwide to build thriving communities, attract and grow businesses, and protect citizens. From planning, building, licensing and permitting, to asset and service request management, finance, environmental health and more, Accela’s SaaS offerings are designed to readily solve government’s biggest challenges with extensive domain expertise built into every solution. Powered by Microsoft Azure, Accela’s open and flexible workflow automation technology helps agencies address specific constituent needs today, while ensuring they are prepared for any emerging or complicated challenges in the future. Accela’s solutions serve more than 80 percent of America’s largest cities. Accela is headquartered in San Ramon, California, with additional offices around the world.

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