Verizon Offers Free Security Credentials To Healthcare Professionals

The credentials meet Level 3 authentication requirements and allow healthcare providers to receive digitized health data from other clinicians securely.
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If a doctor that’s signed up for Verizon’s free data exchange services tries to electronically send patient data to another physician that’s not yet on the exchange, the non-member will receive a fax with directions on accessing the data via the Verizon physician web-portal using a one-time password. That non-member physician will also receive instructions for registering on the exchange and getting the free identity credentials, said Archer.

Verizon’s Medical Data Exchange was unveiled in March to facilitate the point-to-point sharing of digitized dictated notes among doctors and from transcription services providers to physicians. However, last month Verizon expanded its Medical Data Exchange to allow sharing of a broader range of structured and unstructured patient data, including lab reports, X-rays and e-medical record data. Whether the Verizon ID credentialing will be widely adopted for use as a single identity by U.S. healthcare providers on other clinical systems and applications is difficult to predict, said Amy DeCarlo, a principal analyst at research firm Current Analysis.

However, through the offering of free medical identity credentials, Verizon is currently the only services provider going after the healthcare professional market in “such a broad way,” she said.

It’s unlikely that all 2.3 million licensed healthcare professional in the U.S eligible to participate in the Verizon program will register for the free ID credentials, DeCarlo said. However, “even if Verizon gets a small percentage signed up that, it’s significant,” she said.

While the web-portal access to data is available free to healthcare professionals in their practices, Verizon generates revenue through the services it provides to hospitals, large healthcare organizations and medical transcription companies that are using the Verizon exchange to share patient data.