Beyond healthcare, we all encountered the immediate challenges introduced by COVID-19 on sectors that touch our everyday lives. Yet as recovery comes into focus – thanks to critical efforts to “flatten the curve” and distribute vaccines globally –the pandemic’s far-reaching impact is still apparent in industries like hospitality. If you’re following our company’s journey, you’ve likely heard about our efforts to reestablish confidence in travel with our Health Security VERIFIED™ solution. However as we make progress in supporting the travel industry with this new technology-driven solution, our broader body work with VERIFIED intends to establish a new baseline of health, safety, and security – not only for travel and tourism, but also various places and touch-points people encounter every day.
At Sharecare, the importance of community-driven care is always top of mind, but for many individuals, the pandemic only began to illuminate its significance. Devastated communities and industries are feeling the long-term impacts of the risks hidden in their surroundings – not just the direct risks to physical health, but also others that may threaten economic vitality, our sense of normalcy and resilience, and more. On the other end of the spectrum, others have adapted quickly to support the needs and other facets of well-being that enable us to thrive and be resilient. As a result, we’ve seen these businesses – flexible workplaces, restaurants with curbside and contactless options, and even virtually enabled healthcare practices, as a few examples – not only survive the pandemic, but also play vital roles in our next normal.
In partnership with Forbes Travel Guide, we first launched VERIFIED in 2020 as a resource for hotels and resorts to maximize resilience through a culture of accountability. With this solution, we empower each facility to verify their health security measures and protocols align with expert-validated best practices and public health guidelines – not only to mitigate these health risks as the top priority, but also reduce the direct and indirect costs of business disruptions on owners, employees, and consumers alike. By establishing a trusted third-party system, our aim is to put confidence back in the minds of consumers and the industry alike; and with partners like Internova Travel Group, the Los Cabos Tourism Board, Sonesta, and Los Angeles Tourism, this has translated to a travel comeback at more than 700 hotels and resorts globally that have integrated health security across their operations. And since introducing VERIFIED, we’ve expanded the solution’s reach to much-needed industries in our communities, verifying the health security of more than 2,100 restaurants with our partners at Andiago – a new digital restaurant booking service – and most recently, stadiums and arenas with support from CAA ICON and Oak View Group.
Beyond taking a tailored approach to verification based on the unique attributes of each industry and facility, VERIFIED is flexibly designed to adapt seamlessly in concert with the everchanging public health guidelines, regulations, and localized risk levels. Just the same, our innovation strategy in this category is enabling us to adapt to a future in which sustaining health security is paramount – both to optimize and sustain our well-being day-to-day.
In the six months since we introduced VERIFIED, we’re proud this solution has empowered thousands of businesses to become partners in caring for the health of our communities when we needed it most. As we continue exploring new avenues for this solution, we look forward driving health security in our surroundings and workplaces as powerful foundation for population-wide well-being.