Mastercard, b.well team-up to give consumers secure control over their digital health data

The b.well platform brings together patient data across providers, insurers, pharmacies, and a patient's own apps and devices.

bWell app

b.well Connected Health announced a partnership with Mastercard to provide individuals a simpler and more secure way to prove their identity online and in-person when accessing healthcare services.

The b.well platform brings together patient data across providers, insurers, pharmacies, and a patient’s own apps and devices, so people can share their information, manage their medications, understand their costs, and receive personalized health insights and alerts. Now, with the introduction of Mastercard’s ID Verification service, b.well users will also be able to securely verify their identity in real time using their mobile phones.

Why does it matter?

The partnership enables healthcare organizations to provide their members and patients with a biometric alternative to verify their identity in-person or virtually, replacing traditional processes involving physical documents such as a driver’s license. Mastercard’s ID Verification service employs a combination of government ID document scanning, facial biometrics with liveness detection, and mobile phone intelligence to deliver high success rates for automated user verification.

ThedaCare, a 7-hospital Wisconsin health system that has made b.well available to its communities under the name “Ripple,” is the first U.S. health system to use Mastercard ID Verification.

b.well will offer the service to its health plan and health system customers, who depend on b.well’s Connected Health Platform to engage and connect their members and patients in a single mobile application.

On the record

“Consumers want to use their phones to connect with their doctors, get information about their insurance, and share sensitive information with trusted sources, but the process for authenticating themselves is complicated, difficult, and not always secure,” said Kristen Valdes, CEO and Founder of b.well. “Our partnership with Mastercard solves that problem by enabling consumers to protect their identity, while at the same time simplifying the verification of their identity, giving them more control over their personal information and streamlining interactions with their providers and health plan.”

“As part of our mission of creating a healthier community, we strive to make it easier for our patients and community members to use digital tools to engage with our providers and manage their health,” said Jim Albin, Chief Information Officer of ThedaCare. “The Mastercard ID Verification provided through Ripple offers added safety and security for them to use their smartphones to verify their identity when accessing virtual care or sharing personal medical information, adding convenience as well as peace of mind.”

“Mastercard is working to deliver a globally interoperable ID, ensuring strong security and governance. Our partnership with b.well offers consumers the ability to interact with their health plan providers and third parties while better protecting their personal identity information,” said Sarah Clark, Senior Vice President Digital Identity of Mastercard. “We’re pleased to join b.well in helping to provide consumers with a trusted and truly patient-centered digital health care journey.”

The context

Mastercard ID Verification is designed to comply with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) Identity Assurance Level 2 (IAL2), the federal government’s highest level of assurance for remote consumer-facing identity proofing. The NIST IAL2 benchmark is cited as a requirement in many healthcare use cases involving patient data sharing, aligned with the ONC Cures Act Final Rule for secure patient access to their medical record.