The Smart Card Alliance Healthcare Council released a white paper providing smart card guidance for the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) Health Identification Card Implementation Guide. The white paper provides WEDI-compliant smart card designs and includes a discussion of the features and benefits of smart ID cards for healthcare providers and payers.
“The Smart Card Alliance supports WEDI’s goal to enable automated and interoperable identification using standardized machine-readable health identification cards,” said Randy Vanderhoof, executive director of the Smart Card Alliance. “This white paper complements the WEDI guide by outlining how smart card technology provides a strong foundation for health ID cards. They enable improvement in healthcare processes and in patient identity verification, while securing patient information and protecting patient privacy.”
“The intent of the WEDI Guide and its underlying ANSI standard is to standardize present practice and bring uniformity of information, appearance, and machine-readable technology. It offers great benefit; yet it is a simple identification card. Smart card technology, with its far greater capacity and ability to be updated, brings opportunity for heightened security and new health applications,” said Peter Barry, co-chair, WEDI Health ID Card workgroup.
The white paper provides a thorough explanation of smart card technology, as well as the benefits of smart cards for healthcare applications for payers, healthcare delivery organizations, patients, healthcare providers, and healthcare employers. Some of these benefits include:
- Accurate identification of the patient
- Accurate information on patient health plan
- Reduction in medical fraud
- Reduction of duplicate tests and payments
- Streamlined patient registration
- HIPAA compliance
- Improved patient privacy and information security
- Support for meaningful use requirements
- Reduced costs
“The WEDI Health ID Implementation Guide specifically mentions smart cards as an appropriate card type, and this white paper expands on the idea. Smart cards are the only technology that can provide the security and privacy features that are fundamental to any patient identity management system,” said Michael Magrath, chairman of the Smart Card Alliance Healthcare Council and business development director for Gemalto.
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Source: Smart Card Alliance News Release