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Old 07-10-2007, 12:26 AM   #56
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VeriChip Goes Direct to Consumer

(September 04, 2007) Delray Beach, Fla.-based VeriChip Corp. plans to market its VeriMed implantable chips and Patient Registry service directly to consumers.

The vendor's new Patient First program will enable patients to be implanted with its VeriChip microchip for free and pay a $9.95 monthly fee for a subscription to its Patient Registry service. The Patient Registry is a component of VeriChip's Patient Identification System, which enables patients to be implanted with a microchip that's linked to their medical information.

The chip, which contains a 16-digit identification number assigned by VeriChip, is implanted underneath the patient's skin, between the elbow and shoulder. Physicians can access the number by scanning a patient with the vendor's reader. To access the medical record, physicians must enter the number into VeriChip's Web-based Patient Registry Database.

VeriChip will launch the Patient First program in the areas where several hospitals use its VeriMed system, including south Florida, northern New Jersey, Boston, Baltimore, Washington, Philadelphia and Atlanta. The vendor previously relied on physicians and hospitals to attract patients to be implanted with the microchips. Patients also had to pay at least $200 up front for the implantable chip and patient registry service under the former program.

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