Mini RFID Device Stores Personal Medical Data, Makes It Instantly Accessible

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Japan-based chemical and tech company Asahi Kasei has developed a small healthcare product that should make life for paramedics, emergency doctors (and patients) easier: the portable device (pictured) makes it possible to instantly access all medical data on a specific person with a PC or smartphone, via RFID.

Asahi Kasei uses the FeliCa smart card tech (instead of a self-developed solution), as this system has been widely adopted by all of Japan’s mobile carriers, several major PC makers (i.e. Sony for their Vaio computers), and other electronics companies. In Japan, FeliCa as a brand has actually been around since 1994.

In an emergency situation, doctors or paramedics can tap Felica-equipped equipment against the device to view medical data of its owner, for example the blood type, date of birth etc. on the screen in seconds. Asahi Kasei says that the entire medical history of patients can be stored. If doctors need to view very large files, for example X-ray images, the device can make access possible by letting users click on links that lead to that data (but stored on external servers).

The device is just sized at 3x3cm. According to Japanese business daily The Nikkei, Asahi Kasei is planning to market it within a year (and priced at $25 a unit).