Identity in Healthcare

Written By John Fieldsend
id in healthcare

Unfortunately, in the healthcare industry worldwide, a lack of automation accentuated by the use of old systems combined with a dependence upon manual processes means most medical facilities are highly vulnerable to data breaches. A global ‘2018 Cost of a Data Breach’ study conducted by Ponemon Institute says that for the eighth year running, healthcare organisations had the highest breach-related costs of any industry at $408 per lost or stolen record — nearly three times the cross-industry average of $148.

Notwithstanding the limitations caused by old systems architecture, the trend towards accessing a range of healthcare services online (such as ordering prescriptions, registering with a practice or merely engaging in a support group) has resulted in the rise of a variety of digital identity requirements that demand stringent security standards. According to the McKinsey Digital Patient Survey , more than 75% of respondents across multiple countries would like to use digital healthcare services. And, contrary to popular belief, it’s not only the young who seek e-health options; the same survey points out that more than 70% of patients over 50 want to use digital healthcare services.

There are many sector-specific barriers to implementing security in Healthcare: outdated systems, constant change to role-based access, large, disparate user populations to name but a few.

Visitor badges prevent intruders from freely wandering the hospital without authorisation. While visitor badges are typically somewhat basic in design, it is possible to employ a more advanced system that integrates visitor IDs with existing security systems and data tracking software, making use of biometrics and other personal identifiers.

Patient ID cards and badges help to create a more organised and efficient hospital environment. Many use smart card technology allowing patient information to be stored securely on an embedded chip rather than in endless piles of paperwork. Such a system speeds up the patient registration process, facilitates top quality care and also reduces waste. Patient IDs are also used to track surgical itineraries and can contain the cardholder’s health records, prescriptions and any allergies
of note. This can be read at the bedside or in an emergency situation by a health professional equipped with an appropriate mobile card reader.

Identity in HealthcareIssuing a single, secure, multi-purpose credential is the way forward. Such a multi-purpose solution can:

  • Support both identity and payment
  • Be portable across a variety of form factors ranging from cards to mobile phones
  • Provide a secure carrier for portable medical records
  • Secure access to emergency medical information
  • Enable compliance with government initiatives and mandates

Our related whitepaper explores these issues and discusses the options available to the industry in order to use identity to save and protect lives. It includes case studies based on SESAM-Vitale in France and Germany’s eGK.

Download the full whitepaper here.

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Identity in Healthcare
  • File name: Identity-in-Healthcare.pdf
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22nd May 2019