Wednesday, October 13, 2004

News: FDA approves injecting ID chips in patients

The United States Food and Drug Administration has approved a new technology that involves implanting a tiny chip into the forearm that contains a unique serial number that is linked to a database containing an individual's medical records. The device is not yet listed on the FDA's website's Medical Devices Approval list, but there are reams of coverage linked from Google News.

See, for example, the following article from ZDNet:

FDA approves injecting ID chips in patients | Tech News on ZDNet:

"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the practice of injecting humans with tracking devices for medical purposes, according to a Florida company that makes the devices.

Applied Digital, maker of the implantable VeriChip for humans, announced Wednesday the FDA's approval of its technology for use in hospitals following a yearlong review by the agency.

The computer chips, which are about the size of a grain of rice, are designed to be injected into the fatty tissue of the arm. Using a special scanner, doctors and other hospital staff can fetch information from the chips, such as the patient's identity, their blood type and the details of their condition, in order to speed treatment.


Medical data is not stored on the devices, also known as radio frequency identification chips. Rather, it's stored in a database that links the chips' unique serial numbers with patient data. In its review, the FDA carefully studied the privacy issues around the technology, specifically the risk that medical records could be improperly disclosed, according to Applied Digital... "

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