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Remote smartcard registration – emergency guidance for Registration Authorities
This process will apply when face-to-face registration meetings and the use of identity checkers are not possible during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Streamlining authentication guidance for clinicians
To be issued with an NHS smartcard, health professionals and NHS staff must have their identity verified to NHS Employers' identity check standards.
Local registration authority managers will find it useful to refer to the National Registration Authority Policy.
Care Identity Service users will find it useful to refer to the Registration Authorities Operational and Process Guidance.
Care Identity Service
The Care Identity Service is an electronic system for registering and issuing smartcards. Registration authorities use the Care Identity Service to control NHS smartcard access for the NHS Spine's 800,000+ smartcard users. It’s a unified application that provides a single location for all registration authority activities.
NHS smartcards are similar to chip and PIN bank cards and enable healthcare professionals to access clinical and personal information appropriate to their role.
A smartcard used in conjunction with a passcode, known only to the smartcard holder, gives secure and auditable access to national and local Spine enabled health record systems.
We are working to supply the NHS with additional smartcards and smartcard readers to support the response to coronavirus (COVID-19), including globally sourcing new stock.
We have received requests for 6 months worth of stock in the last 2 weeks.
You should repurpose and use existing equipment you already have, for example existing smartcard readers and keyboards with inbuilt readers, wherever possible.
We will continue to challenge every order and request justification so that we can manage demand and support fair distribution across the NHS.
Individual card users should contact their local registration authority teams.
Find contact details for primary care service provider organisations.
How are records protected?
The NHS Care Record Guarantee for England sets out the rules that govern how patient information is used in the NHS and what controls patients can have over this. It covers:
- people's access to their own records
- controls on others' access (such as carers)
- how access will be monitored and policed
- options people have to further limit access
- access in an emergency
- what happens when someone cannot make decisions for themselves
Everyone who works for the NHS or for organisations delivering services under contract to the NHS has to comply with this guarantee. It was first published in 2005 and is subject to regular review, ensuring it remains clear and continues to reflect the law and best practice.
Find contact details for Registration Authority (RA) primary care service provider organisations that support primary care organisations.
Find forms, guidance leaflets, and the latest news and updates related to the Care Identity Service.
Find out how to request smartcards and smartcard readers.
Find out about ordering printer materials and additional printers, along with how to report printer problems.
Find out about Care Identity Services e-learning materials.
Order a supply of smartcards
Approved authentication tokens privacy notice and terms and conditions for NHS Identity and Care Information Service (CIS) users
These terms and conditions cover all access to the NHS Care Records Service applications.