Digital certificates enable secure health information sharing

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Secure identity solutions specialist IdenTrust, part of ASSA ABLOY Group company HID Global, is participating in a program to make it easier for health care consumers in the US to share their personal health information with medical professionals via secure e-mail.

Through the Partnership for Patients Program (P4PP) launched by collaborative non-profit association DirectTrust, patients and health care consumers will be able to share their health information with medical staff at hospitals, offices, and clinics with greater confidentiality. This is enabled through the use of digital certificates, some of which are supplied by DirectTrust member IdenTrust.  

The certificates are an integral component of P4PP, as they provide the necessary identity proofing to ensure that consumers can confidently engage in two-way digital communication with their care providers without having their privacy compromised, which according to DirectTrust President and CEO David Kibbe, is a growing demand.

“IdenTrust digital certificates add trust to communications containing sensitive personal information, making it possible for patients to share health care information with both ease and the confidence that their privacy is protected,” Kibbe says.

Individuals in the US who join P4PP will have access to DirectTrust’s nationwide network of 58,000 health care organizations. They can also take advantage of Direct exchange, which enables simple electronic health information exchange similar to regular e-mail, with added encryption and identity assurance for additional privacy protection.

Jerry Cox, Director, Business Development with IdenTrust, says that making it easier for patients to access their health information via secure, electronic means is also central to the US government’s efforts to increase patient and family engagement.

“IdenTrust’s participation in the new DirectTrust P4PP reinforces our commitment to making trusted communications of health care information possible,” Cox says. “In addition, it supports the strategy set forth by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to enable and drive adoption of Health Information Exchanges.”