Now, You Don't Need a Physical Social Security Card?! WeChat...

Source: SCMP

WeChat Pay and Alipay, Chinas mobile payment duopoly operated by Tencent Holdings and Alibaba Group Holding respectively, have been further embedded into the everyday lives of Chinese people after being integrated into the countrys national health care system.

In seven pilot provinces and cities, the National Healthcare Security Administration has just started issuing electronic certificates that could be used as the digital version of Chinas social security card, which gives Chinese citizens access to their national health care insurance scheme.

Residents from those cities places can access their e-certificates either through a dedicated app associated with the scheme, or, via WeChat Pay and Alipay if they are already users of the two payment apps.

With their certificates activated, WeChat or Alipay users will be able to enjoy all the benefits provided by their physical social security card, but without the hassle of having to bring one when they are making doctor appointments, paying for or reimbursing medicines and health care services.

This is not the first time the Chinese mobile payments duo have incorporated public services into their platforms in China.

In 2018, the Chinese Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security launched electronic cards that enable users to access information such as their identification, employment, and payment records. People can also make online payments via WeChat Pay and Alipay for social security expenses, including registration fees for insurance, training and test fees, and other relevant payments, according to state media reports.

KrASIA has previously reported that in June Chinas government launched mini-programs on WeChat and Alipay that provide a wide variety of government services, giving users access to 200 government services regardless of their geographic location or time of day.

These services cover different forms of inquiries, payments, applications, and complaints across such matters as digital ID, education, civil administration, social security, entry and exits from the country, business registration, cultural travel, and the judicial system.



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