Sunday, October 17, 2004

Chip implants

The day when we all have chips implanted under our skin to identify ourselves looks like it is drawing ever closer. The Telegraph reports that implanted medical record chips 'will save lives globally':

The chip is inserted under the skin of a person's upper arm in a 20-minute procedure costing £100. Each device has an identification number, which allows doctors to access individual patient information on centrally stored medical records.

Don Mackechnie, the chairman of the British Medical Association's Accident and Emergency committee, and a consultant at the Rochdale Infirmary, said: "Such a device could prove very useful in a situation where we have an unconscious patient with an unknown medical history. It could reveal serious allergies to medicines, for example."

He said, however, that he had some concerns about the devices. "We would need to see how much it cost to buy the equipment needed to reed the devices," he said.

"There's also the issue of privacy and who would be able to access the information and how. In other words, we need to see what the practicalities will be.

I guess by the time e.g. 80% of the population have these, governments will start making them mandatory.

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