Information for the Public
The Individual Health Identifier
An individual number that uniquely and safely identifies you.
The Individual Health Identifier (IHI) is being introduced in our Health Services.
The IHI is a number that will be used to uniquely and safely identify you and your health information when you are using a health service in Ireland. You don’t need to remember it to use our health services. The IHI will improve patient safety by identifying you.
Your IHI number is the key to your information record. It lasts for your lifetime and will never be assigned to anyone else. It is only used to identify you safely - your IHI does not contain any of your medical information, and you don’t need to remember it to use our health services.
This helps to makes services safer, more efficient and cuts down the risk of errors. An IHI like this is used in many countries and health services around the world.
What are the benefits of the IHI?
- Improved accuracy in identifying you and your medical records
- Enables safe and seamless sharing of health information – for example, a referral letter sent from a hospital to your GP
- Faster care due to the electronic transfer of some of your health information – for example, blood test results and x-rays.
Your IHI number will be stored confidentially, securely and will only be used by your healthcare professionals.
What’s recorded in my IHI?
Your IHI record is a combination of your IHI number and other personal information that is used to safely identify you.
The Health Identifiers Act 2014 allows the following information to be collected and stored in your IHI record:
Your IHI - your key to a safer, more efficient health service.
For more information on the IHI, please visit www.ehealthireland.ie/IHI , email IHI@hse.ie or speak to your healthcare professional.