Slovenia has chosen Gemalto to help develop its upgrade to their electronic health cards for Slovenian citizens.

Gemalto will provide the Slovenian health service with its Coesys Issuance solution, which consists of middleware, digital signature capabilities, software applications, applets and cards.

They will work together with Slovenian suppliers Cetis, who will provide the personalisation of the cards and the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) requirements, and ZZZS, the Health Insurance Institute of Slovenia, who are in charge of the National Health Insurance Card System.

Gemalto say the new electronic health card will be the first of its kind in Europe to feature a Java public key infrastructure (PKI) that will further secure the online health system via a digital signature for health professionals.

Slovenia has been using health smartcards since 2000. The country is now renewing and upgrading the 2m e-health cards already in circulation in the country.

Gemalto’s executive vice president of the security business unit division, Jacques Seneca, said: “The introduction of this new PKI based solution is further evidence of Gemalto and its partners’ commitment towards innovation that provides better security and convenience for governments and citizens.”

Gemalto say the new cards “will significantly enhance online services for health professionals by enabling them to go through their administrative tasks faster and exchange medical data and messages with hospitals and other health professionals in an easy and secure manner.”

ZZZS director of the National Health Insurance Card System. Sector, Marjan Sušelj, said: “Our eHealth 2010 strategic plan has the ambitious objective to inter-connect health information systems on the national level, ensuring eServices and transparent information to all relevant parties in a secure and efficient way.

“The Gemalto technology is one of the key enablers to put in place this eBusiness model for a common way of work in the Slovenian health sector by 2010.”