A sure thing

How secure are e-prescriptions and the e-prescription app, which both launch on 1 July 2021? This is a question being asked not only by the patients, doctors and pharmacists who will be working with these applications on a daily basis in the near future, but gematik, which is committed to data protection and information security in the digitalisation of the German healthcare system, also wants to know the precise answers to these questions and so has commissioned several external expert reports to examine the applications. The experts, whose selection had to be approved by the Federal Office for Information Security (BSI), confirm that there is no reason not to go ahead with a controlled roll-out to live operation and that the applications can thus become part of the telematics infrastructure. The e-prescription app for Germany was developed by gematik, which also provided the specifications for the e-prescription.


Holm Diening, Head of Security at gematik, said, “We’re publishing the expert report on the e-prescription app in order to create transparency and build trust. We’ll also publish the summary from the product reports by the specialist service and the identity provider as well as the results of the penetration test for the system as a whole. This is consistent with our policy of open communication towards users from the general public and the professional community, especially, but not exclusively, in terms of the development processes for the e-prescription and the e-prescription app. It is not without good reason that we have already published gematik’s software, which sets the standard for the e-prescription specialist service, as open source for anyone to access and continuously update. We have also obliged the manufacturers of the specialist service (IBM Germany) and the identity provider (RISE) for the e-prescription commissioned by gematik to publish the entire source code of their products. The development, introduction and also the security evaluation of the e-prescription and the gematik app, both of which will become part of so many people’s everyday lives, should be shared with the greatest possible openness from start to finish.”

Expert report with a foreword by gematik