Monday, November 10, 2008

Once Again, Texas Leads the Way

Hospitals look to 'palm readers' to sort same-named | Houston & Texas News | - Houston Chronicle: "One recent day, two patients named Maria Garcia occupied rooms in Harris County Hospital District facilities. Also receiving treatment that day were three women named Maria Hernandez, three named Maria Rodriguez and three sharing the name Maria Martinez.
[. . . .]
To avoid the possibility of mixups, the district has decided it needs to also use unique physical attributes to match people with their medical records. The third identifier would distinguish the thousands of patients who have identical first and last names, including some born on the same day in the same month and year.
[. . . .]
Next year, the district, the county's tax-supported safety net for the medically uninsured, will try out a program that differentiates patients by distinct features of anatomy.

The technology is part of a science called biometrics, measurements related to the human body. Products already on the market include devices that can recognize fingerprints, faces and ears."

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