Axalto Chosen for Large Healthcare Smart Card Rollout

Axalto, a top provider of microprocessor cards, announced today that it has been selected to provide all two million microprocessor cards for the Puerto Rico Department of Health's new Health Smart Card ("Tarjeta Inteligente De Salud") program. The project covers the entire Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and is the largest deployment of health care smart cards in North America to date.

"This project demonstrates how microprocessor cards can be a very valuable tool in North America for health care providers, insurers and patients alike," said Paul Beverly, president of Axalto Americas. "Smart cards enable compliance with HIPAA regulations, as well as support for new applications that deliver clinical and administrative benefits. They support the delivery of fast, efficient and appropriate medical care and allow institutions to securely manage patient records while protecting privacy, verifying patient eligibility and billing appropriate entities for the proper amounts."

Axalto collaborated with Puerto Rico-based Evertec Inc., the integrator that is providing for the complete system implementation. Total deployment is expected to be completed by the middle of 2005. Volume deliveries by Axalto have already started.

The Department of Health card deployed is the high-end Cyberflex cryptographic smart card from Axalto, a highly secure microprocessor card which features advanced cryptography and large data storage.

The Health Smart Card is distributed to all beneficiaries of the plan who are certified as eligible for the Medicaid Program of the PRDOH. Current plans call for operating 220 issuing stations in several regions, and eventually issuing health cards for two million Medicaid recipients.

The rollout follows on the heels of a successful pilot conducted with 16,000 smart cards already deployed by PRDOH. The goal of the pilot was to assess and validate the integration of the Electronic Medical Record System with smart card technology in the delivery of health care services. During the pilot, the voluntary enrollment in the smart card program was close to 80% of total eligible beneficiaries.