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Top Five Challenges in Healthcare

​Hospitals face the risk of data breaches and difficult compliance challenges. Here are five of the most pressing problems that can be solved using trusted identity technologies.


Trusted identities streamline compliance in two key ways. Physicians complete an authentication process to comply with the HIPAA Security Rule aimed at protecting patient health information. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration requires separate two-factor authentication when using electronic prescribing controlled substances (EPCS) solutions—a key weapon in the opioids battle. Using trusted identities meets both requirements. Integrated systems extend multifactor authentication across the entire identity and access management lifecycle, and elevate trust through digital certificates and signatures and signing—all backed by public key infrastructure (PKI) security.


Hospitals can integrate visitor management software with real-time patient feeds, preregistration information, and the hospital's access control system. They can use physical identity and access management (PIAM) software to standardize identity management while tying in external services. Adding visitor awareness capabilities creates a complete solution for checking in visitors, running background checks, managing identities, and issuing credentials. Location-based visitor awareness provides wayfinding for patients and visitors who are navigating the hospital, knowing where in the building they are—and where they have been in the past.


Regulations require viewable physical identification for all patients and their families, so hospitals should expect to see more badges in the future. New card personalization solutions offer customization and security features that minimize counterfeiting and simplify issuance. Today's versatile smart cards meet the need for hospital staff to securely access networks and workstations, enter emergency rooms and pharmacies, and make cafeteria purchases.​


Converged credentials plus real-time location services for work- place optimization and asset-tracking are two ways trusted IDs streamline workflow. Trusted identities also underpin Internet of Things solutions that combine Bluetooth low energy (BLE) technology, predictive analytics and proximity-based location technologies for optimizing emergency department and clinical operations workflows, and real-time asset-tracking to quickly and efficiently locate critical medical equipment.​


Electronic visit verification (EVV) systems leverage trusted identities to streamline in-home patient visits and eliminate billing fraud. Solutions combine trusted near field communication (NFC) tags, mobile apps, cloud authentication services, and web applications to simplify "proof of presence" by making it easier to document the time, location, and accurate delivery of prescribed care.

 Sheila Loy is director of healthcare strategies at HID Global.