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First Professional Healthcare Professional ID in Germany

Pilot project launched with 1,000 physiotherapists

Vice Chairman of the IFK, Rick de Vries, with the first electronic Healthcare Professional ID card

The upcoming introduction of 80 million electronic Healthcare Cards and around 2.5 million Healthcare Professional ID cards in Germany is one of the largest IT infrastructure projects worldwide. In an important pilot project the first 1000 Healthcare Professional ID cards are being issued to therapists in the Federal Association of Self-Employed Physiotherapists – IFK e.V.-  as a test run. The vice chairman of the IFK, Rick de Vries, is now the holder of the very first ID card: “We are very proud that the physiotherapists are involved in this important milestone for introducing telematics to the German healthcare system and that we are accompanying the process right from the beginning.” The project is being implemented with the help of important cooperation partners: the Centre for Telematics and Telemedicine (ZTG), the French Atos Group and the opta data group of companies.

The electronic Healthcare Professional ID (eHBA) is the counterpart to the electronic Healthcare Card which insured people are issued with. In future they will also be able to handle a variety of functions such as electronic prescriptions. As therapists are also to have access to this data, they clearly need electronic professional ID cards to give them the necessary authorizations. The photo ID card not only documents the identity of the therapists but also enables them to use an advanced electronic signature. The Healthcare Professional ID will in future be issued by the electronic Healthcare Professional Register (eGBR) which, like the IFK, ZTG and opta data, will be located at the new NRW Healthcare Campus in Bochum.

The “electronic Healthcare Professional ID” pilot project is being carried out by the ZTG GmbH (Centre for Telematics and Telemedicine in Healthcare). The aim is to test the issuing process and possible application scenarios for the eHBA – and to continue to develop it up to when it is issued nationwide. The experience gained here will lead to successively equipping other professional groups with the eHBA. In the end up to two million professional IDs will be issued by the eGBR to members of the 40 non-chamber healthcare professions. The specific healthcare chambers will be organizing the issuing of Healthcare Professional IDs to their own members.

With these pilot eHBAs, the first 1000 physiotherapists cannot only officially identify themselves as members of their profession, but can also accompany this future electronic orientation in healthcare, become familiar with the system and help to develop it right from the beginning. IFK members can apply for a pilot eHBA card on the IFK, opta data and eGBR websites.

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