The Turkish province of Bolu is set to begin rolling out smart cards as part of a nine-month pilot aimed at preventing theft of health insurance, speeding up the health system and preventing data loss.
Starting in March 2008, the cards will be distributed to 10,000 people living in Bolu, giving them access to all health services. Following the initial trial, an estimated 300,000 people in the province will be issued with the cards.
According to local media, the card will contain the cardholder’s basic information, health information and fingerprints.
Testing and usage of the smart cards is to be managed by the Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) and the country’s National Electronic and Cryptology Research Institute.
The work to prepare the card is being carried out in a joint effort by Turkey’s State Planning Organisation (DPT), its Health Ministry, its Social Security Institution (SGK), TUBITAK and its Interior Ministry.