Electronic prescription: the SMS code on Cardlink does not correspond to the state of the art


With the Cardlink procedure, scheduled for the next few weeks, online pharmacies hope to have access to electronic prescriptions. They asked for a sender solution for the electronic prescription, as currently insured people have to send an image of the electronic prescription printout to pharmacies. In this context, the use of an SMS code instead of a PIN for the electronic health card was discussed. In this way, insured people can, for example, use remote services such as an online pharmacy to redeem their electronic prescription. The electronic health card will continue to be used.


Companies are increasingly abandoning SMS TANs for security reasons; the savings banks already silenced them years ago. The Federal Office for Information Security (BSI) also confirmed online that the procedure should only apply temporarily. The BSI has recommended that Gematik – which promises final specifications for Cardlink for the first quarter – “only consider its use temporarily until health ID is widespread across the board,” a BSI spokesperson says in response .

Although the concept of Cardlink is specified by Gematik, the “application-related parts”, such as e-prescription redemption via Cardlink, “are not directly part of the Regulation”, nor are the relevant recommendations in the implementation guidelines, according to the spokesperson. Both do not correspond to the state of the art.

The BSI therefore recommends using the electronic prescription “in the legally guaranteed form confirmed by the BSI with electronic health card and PIN entry” until insured persons have received a health card from their health insurance companies.


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