Running head: VeriChip (chip)

We Can But Should We?
Deborah Cupp
Chamberlain College of Nursing

NR 361: Nursing Informatics
Summer B 2011

In this report I will examine the human implant device known as the Verichip (chip) and discuss the pros and cons of its usage. The VeriChip Corporation developed the verichip to reduce the issues surrounding patient safety, identification, and accuracy of patients’ history of diseases, and medications. Although the digital era has evolved with advancement in technology, researching the pros and cons of patient safety will be the goal of this report.
The VeriChip is a small human implantable radio frequency identification device (RFID) microchip, approximately the size of a piece of rice, which is injected into the subcutaneous tissue of the patient (Thede, 2010, p. 440). According to the author, the VeriChip is used in patients with chronic diseases like diabetes mellitus, stroke, Alzheimer patients, and those with other implanted devices such as pacemakers and joint replacements (Thede, 2010, p.440). According to Applied Digital (2000), a specialized VeriChip scanner displays a16-digit code (identification number) when scanned approximately 300 feet away. The VeriChip transmits information via telephone, internet, or to a secure data-storage site. The VeriChip accesses an individual’s information like medical history, diseases, allergies, and medications. According to Albrecht (2008) Verichip claims FDA approval, though the VeriChip was approved by default without testing at any level, as the Verichip was not considered a ‘regulated medical device’.   The Verichip claims to save lives, enhance security and improve quality of life, but research shows this medical device may not be too secure for patient safety.
The Verichip centralizes information into a database and provides patients’ medical information in a quick and accurate manner, referred to as a ready source of data which can be retrieved in emergency...