DirectTrust has acquired the assets of SAFE Identity, including its trust framework. The acquisition significantly expands the capabilities and services of DirectTrust and is intended to enable new and expanded use cases for interoperability. SAFE Identity (SAFE) is an industry consortium and certification authority that supports identity assurance and cryptography in healthcare. DirectTrust is a non-profit healthcare industry alliance that supports the secure, identity-verified electronic exchange of proprietary health information (PHI) between provider organizations and between providers and patients to better coordinate care.
DirectTrust created DirectTrust Identity, a new division to house the SAFE Trust Framework. New and current members of both organizations can rely on DirectTrust to manage policies and infrastructure, and to support a community that issues secure and identifiable credentials for electronic healthcare transactions. Members of the SAFE Policy Management Authority (PMA) will participate as members of DirectTrust Identity, which operates the SAFE infrastructure used by several major pharmaceutical companies to securely interact with federal agencies (per 21 CFR Part 11) and business partners in the United States and global.
“Our acquisition of the SAFE Identity assets is truly a landmark moment for DirectTrust and the entire e-health information industry,” said Scott Stuewe, President and CEO of DirectTrust. “SAFE Identity and DirectTrust are like-minded organizations with memberships that share common goals. Since our inception, DirectTrust has focused on building trust in electronic health communications with the goal of improving the health of individuals and populations. Both the DirectTrust and SAFE Identity trust framework communities seek to enable secure transactions through the use of identity-secured credentials supported by a public key infrastructure and consensus-based policies. “
Stuewe continued, “Members can interact with federal agencies to sign documents and authenticate on systems. Potential new use cases could include generally trustworthy consumer health certificates; Identity assurance and security for the pharmaceutical supply chain (DSCSA), possibly up to clinical pharmacy; as well as the security and identification of medical devices. “
DirectTrust, which is best known for Direct Secure Messaging and the Direct Standard it supports and promotes, was created with the support of the ONC as a public key infrastructure (PKI) based trust framework for scalable interoperability in the healthcare sector to enable. SAFE-BioPharma (predecessor of SAFE Identity) came about when the FDA and pharmaceutical companies were looking for a secure and scalable mechanism to deliver digitized reports to the agency. In response to the growing need for highly secure digital signatures, several large pharmaceutical companies have established SAFE as a legal framework to promote trust and interoperability of digital identities with government agencies such as the FDA, DEA, and the European Medicines Agency. While SAFE Identity and DirectTrust have expanded to other missions since their inception, both attribute their original existence to working with federal agencies and maintaining important relationships and roles with federal agencies.
To learn more about DirectTrust Identity, including frequently asked questions, visit bit.ly/DTIfaqs.
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