Getting Sick? Make Sure You Have Photo ID

Starting Saturday you better have two forms of ID with you if you get sick in many parts of Eastern Carolina and need to go to the hospital.

That's because University Health Systems, which includes Pitt County Memorial Hospital, is requiring a photo ID to protect its patients from medical identity theft. A second form of ID is also required.

Those requiring emergency services will not need to meet those identity requirements.

UHS says this is a part of a new "Red Flag Rule" issued by the Federal Trade Commission.

In addition to admissions, those wanting copies of medical records or those asking to discuss bills will also need to present the two forms of ID.

The hospital system says if someone does not have a photo ID with their current address on it, the patient should also bring a utility bill or some other acceptable for of ID showing their current address.

University Health Systems includes Albemarle Health, Bertie Memorial Hospital, Chowan Hospital, Duplin General Hospital, Heritage Hospital, Outer Banks Hospital, Pitt County Memorial Hospital, and Roanoke-Chowan Hospital.

Acceptable photo IDs include:

Driver's license
State ID card
Military ID
Work ID badge

Second forms of ID include:

Social Security card
Birth certificate
Utility bill (gas, electric, water, phone, cable)
Tax bill or statement
W2 form or income tax return
Credit card
ATM card
Library card
Voter registration card
Residential lease
School record signed by principal
Insurance policy
Letter from homeless shelter
Computer-printed check stub

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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Abigail Location: Stokes on Jul 31, 2009 at 11:49 AM
    To Admin: PCMH Regarding Nurses: Your emergency room gets an AAA ; however, the last time I was in the heart center as a patient, I didn't see a nurse all night (she was making 12 hrs. but not with me). I saw the helper and the cleaning lady during her shift, but no nurse until 6:45 a.m. the next morning when she was preparing to leave. Of course, I couldn't tell the nurse from the cleaning lady. Moreover, the PCMH heart institute is a laugh. Thank God we have Norfolk, Chapel Hill and Duke.
  • by Disappointed on Jul 31, 2009 at 10:08 AM
    I'm a nurse in an ED, and I don't see the "professional, caring attitude" in what BL had to say. You contradicted yourself. I hope you don't work in my department.
  • by Admin Location: PCMH on Jul 31, 2009 at 10:04 AM
    Ok, so much bad information is floating here in the comments section. EMTALA and JCHAO set standards that we must follow in order to receive medicaid and medicare payments. We are not required by law to perform any kind of procedure on anyone. PCMH or any other hospital in the system can refuse who they want to refuse, of course at the cost of your jobs. We can talk about who should go to the ER and who should not, the fact remains that more and more people are using the ER as urgent care. This trend is being felt all over the united states and particulary in areas hit hard by unemployment. In regards to the uniform, if you cannot tell the difference between a nurse and a cleaning lady, aa new uniform will not help you any. People buy replica police uniforms online and the same could be done for nursing uniforms. Our nursing staff sees more patients in one 12 hour shift than those nurses saw all week long! Times have changed, we most adapt and move with time.
  • by Rtd Nurse USAF Location: Jacksonville on Jul 31, 2009 at 09:32 AM
    BL. You are in the wrong professional. You need to find a job you enjoy. You should have thought about being a nurse before the 12 hours shifts. For myself, I served two years in Vietnam under horrible conditions and 28 more years in the USAF afterwards, but I never forgot how to dress because I had respect for my job and loved it.
  • by BL Location: PItt Co on Jul 31, 2009 at 07:17 AM
    to NOT A NURSE: Look professional...let me ask you,,if you have been on your feet for 12 or more hours taking care of people who for the most part don't give a care about their qwn health, what would you wear?? I work in medicine, in 2 ED's, long hours, and dressing comfortably and displaying a professional, caring attitude is more important than looking " cute" the PCMH ED RN...we should tell the 3AM, 3 week old earache in the perfectly healthy person, after being screened and being found that no emergency condtion exists, tell them to leave to go to an urgent care in the AM...but EMTLA won't let us do that...most of them want work notes or a pregnancy test anyway....
  • by PCMH ED RN Location: Greenville, NC on Jul 31, 2009 at 01:20 AM
    Ok as a Emergency Department nurse at a trauma 1 bed unit, we get a lot of pt's every night that have complaints such as "ear ache, stomach ache, and so on" I know that these can mean something serious, but if someone has had these symptoms for 3 weeks and decides at 3 am that they want to see a MD, that is ridiculous!! I mean if you can wait 3 weeks with these symptoms without seeing someone, then you can wait a few more hours to go to a clinic. Most of these people come in the ED because they can ignore the hospital bill when it comes in the mail. Yeah it can damage their credit but they probably don’t even care about that. Anyways I know this was off the subject a little bit, but they need to be able to do it for the ED pt. as well. I know emergency situations occur, but they should find out another way of making it so that they have to prove their identity as well. Who says someone can't go in the ED and say "I'm John Smith" and their real identity is "Steve Jones"?
  • by Not A Nurse Location: NC on Jul 30, 2009 at 10:01 PM
    I have no desire to work in the medical profession. I think "Retrd RN" is right on queue. With what is charged for medical care, those serving should look a little more "professional" and in a type of standard uniform to help protect their identity. Anyone can purchase solid colored pants, a cute flowered shirt, and white tennis shoes and look the part. I'm sure that too will change within my lifetime, and we'll read blogs from nurses pitching fits because they can't wear all the clothes in their closets because of having to purchase standard uniforms.
  • by Chris Location: Greenville on Jul 30, 2009 at 08:36 PM
    "Well its easy to fake" Actually it is not "Illegal" to deny treatment for any symptoms. In order to recieve medicare and medicaid payments they must meet the requirements set forth by JCAHO and keep their accreditation. Any hospital can deny treatment but because of the nature of the business, they would lose MILLIONS and MILLIONS of dollars if the chose to do away with those payments. If you are in fact employed in the healthcare field, I would highly suggest that you do some continuing education and learn all about why our hospitals are like this. Our hospitals choose to take in millions of dollars rather than to solve the problem and not allow no paying customers come into the hospital. There are private hospitals, although only a few, that you cannot even see a Doctor unless you have cash or insurance up front. They mainly cater to the high end customers that do not want to visit the zoo we call a ER.
  • by Kelly Location: LaGrange on Jul 30, 2009 at 06:44 PM
    Good to know their will some protection of fraud. Medical costs are already crazy.
  • by Retrd RN, USAF Location: Jacksonville on Jul 30, 2009 at 04:33 PM
    I don't have any problem with this rule; however, I have a suggestion for the hospital. Require the nurses to dress like nurses and look like nurses. It's interesting to observe student nurses so neat and professional looking in their uniforms. But as soon as they become nurses, it's casual time. You can't tell a nurse from a cleaning lady in this hospital. Nurses - You should be proud of your calling.
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