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Toronto Area Hospitals Find Security Cure in Smart Cards

Two Toronto hospitals recently upgraded their employee ID systems from magnetic swipe cards to contactless smart cards in an effort to elevate the level of building security in their facilities. Both Trillium Health Center and The New Women’s College Hospital now issue contactless smart cards to all employees.

At Trillium, each employee ID card features the worker’s photo along with critical information that needs to be viewable at a glance. The cards are integrated with the facility’s access control system offering more reliability and lower maintenance costs than the hospital’s previous magnetic stripe solution which suffered from occasional damage to card readers. With the smart card solution, employee ID badges are simply waived in front of a special smart card reader. Each card has specific credentials built into it so that different employees are allowed or denied access to specific areas throughout the facility.

Aside from access control for buildings, the hospitals are also exploring other ways of making use of the added storage space available with smart cards. A single smart card, for instance, can be used for building access control, for transactions such as paying for marking and meal plans, as well as controlling access to computer networks.