Houston, Texas – March 11, 2004–Atos Origin, a leading international information technology services provider, today announced it has been selected to conduct a pilot program, the Medicaid Integrity Project. The pilot solution managed by Atos Origin will take place in Tarrant County and involves the issuing of 30,000 smart cards to Medicaid recipients seeking services with 150 health care providers.
“The goal of the pilot program is to facilitate a transition to a technology-based means of preventing Medicaid fraud, abuse and waste while maintaining the quality of services provided to Medicaid beneficiaries. A secondary, and equally important objective is to establish a platform that will permit the consolidation of state program eligibility credentials on to a single ID card,” stated Aurora F. LeBrun, director, Office of Eligibility Services, Texas Health and Human Services Commission. “This pilot is an initiative designed by the State of Texas to determine if smart card-based biometric authentication technology is ready for state government use, and to determine which of the technologies available provide the best recipient and health-care-provider experience.”
Atos Origin is the systems integrator responsible for deploying a biometric and smart card solution in Tarrant County, Texas. This solution is based on the Cyberflex 64K Java card platform and Precise Match-on-Card(TM) fingerprint and smart card technology from Precise Biometrics.
Each recipient will have two finger image templates enrolled and saved to the smart card. A template is an algorithmic binary representation of a pattern extracted from an individual finger image. The template will exist only on the card and cannot be used to derive the original finger image. Using a process called Precise Match-on-Card(TM), the template will be used solely to authenticate the card-holding recipient by comparing the immediate scan of the recipient’s finger with the template on the card. Precise Match-on-Card(TM) is secure and beneficial; secure because it does not rely on either a network or a database of images; beneficial due to the speed of authentication that is less than one second. In a straightforward compare process, the recipient places the appropriate finger on a scanner at time of check in with their health care provider, and the Atos Origin solution immediately verifies that the scanned finger image belongs to the individual enrolled on the smart card. This process is self-contained and neither the scanned finger image nor the template is transmitted across a network or saved to a database, thus eliminating any opportunity of interception or abuse.
“We are bringing together some sophisticated technology in a way that is easy to use for both the provider and the Medicaid recipient, and this is without any compromise to the strength of the security,” said Paul Stewart, executive vice president and CEO, North and South America, Atos Origin. “The immediacy of the authentication eases the burden on the health care provider and ensures accurate accountability for the state.”
“Smart cards are a secure and logical choice for eligibility card programs. They have the added benefit of being able to accommodate multiple programs simultaneously to include as necessary, magnetic-stripe-based legacy systems,” said Francois Lasnier, vice president, Access and Banking, Axalto. “Our Cyberflex 64K smart card is a robust multifunction Java card including a cryptographic processor and secure storage token providing a solid platform on which to securely store a digital fingerprint template and to run a on-card biometric-match function.”
“We are excited to be a part of the Texas Medicaid program, the first large scale biometrics-based health care program of its kind, together with Atos Origin,” stated Christer Bergman, president and chief executive officer, Precise Biometrics. “This is a major breakthrough for the whole industry and demonstrates how the combination of biometrics and smart cards can be used to increase security and save costs while preserving privacy for the users.”