VERICHIP SELLS FIRST BABY PROTECTION SYSTEM, IN TALKS WITH MILITARY
the company that makes human-implantable RFID chips, is looking to span its equipment from newborns to the military's enlisted.
The company announced Aug. 24 that it has made the first sale of its infant protection, wander prevention and staff
duress system to the Brampton
Civic Hospital in Brampton, Ontario. Separately, the company confirmed a day
earlier that it is in talks with the military to test its implantable chips in two branches of the military.
said in a press release Aug. 24 that the Brampton hospital,
under construction now, is spending $750,000 to have VeriChip's platform and applications installed at its newest facility.
VeriChip's infant protection system is really two separate above-the-skin solutions, one a band similar to a standard
hospital bracelet that has an embedded RFID chip. The second option, called the Halo skin-sensing system, is similar to an
electronic key fob for a car that can be attached to an infant's ankle or a patient's wrist. Another key fob-type device can
be worn around the neck of staff members to use as a personal panic button.
But VeriChip also has a separate patient
identification system, VeriMed, which is used beneath the skin. Once the chip is implanted in the fatty part of a person's
arm (or in the hand, as chip volunteers have done), it displays a 16-digit identifier when tapped by an RFID reader. The number
accesses health information in a database that requires a username and password for admittance.
VeriChip, of Delray Beach, Fla., confirmed in media
reports that Scott Silverman, its board chairman, has held informal meetings with U.S. Navy and Air Force officials to discuss
a feasibility study of its VeriMed system.
"These were preliminary discussions in informal meetings about the VeriMed
project...and how it might be incorporated into the Department of Defense's electronic health records program," said Nicole
Philbin, a spokesperson for VeriChip.
The VeriMed chip, which is designed "to give voices to the voiceless in the
most crucial of times," according to Philbin, would be applicable to both veterans and enlisted personnel in both the Navy
and Air Force.
The idea with the VeriMed chip is that data can be accessed even if a patient is severely injured or
While civilians have the option of choosing how much information is accessible on the VeriMed database,
it's not clear what the guidelines would be for enlisted personnel.
"In the civilian market, basically what happens
is you elect to get a microchip, you have the procedure done—it's like a shot of penicillin—the patient is given
a unique log in and password and it is up to the individual what they want to put in their personal profile," said Philbin.
"It can be as much as an organ donation profile and advanced directives or as little as just a person's name and doctor's
The problem, privacy advocates say, is that VeriChip is targeting individuals who may not have a say in whether
or not they are chipped—immigrants, the elderly and the enlisted. (The CEO of Applied Digital, the parent company of
VeriChip, recently suggested the government consider implanting RFID chips into the arms of registered immigrants to address
The government is no stranger to RFID. In July, the Army paid $3.76 million to 3M to implement
an RFID-based system that will track medical files at its massive Fort Hood Army base in Texas—the military's largest
active-duty domestic base. Fort Hood
houses the active medical records of more than 150,000 men and women stationed there—and their dependents' records.
In concert with NATO, the U.S.
military is using RFID to track goods in war theaters as well as through global supply chains. The U.S. State Department,
in concert with the Department of Homeland Security, mandated RFID-chipped passports by the end of this year. And the U.S.
Food & Drug Administration recently released its recommendations for the pharmaceutical industry regarding the use of
RFID to track counterfeit drugs.
Copyright © 2005-2009 by Rev. Dr.
Ricardo E. Nuñez. All Rights Reserved.
FAIR USE NOTICE: This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized
by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political,
human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of
any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section
107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the
included information for research and educational purposes. For more information go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml.
If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain
permission from the copyright owner.