Common Key Service

A consistent, reliable method to help match patients with their electronic health information across multiple organizations, applications, and services  


One of the most important goals in sharing health information electronically is having access to current patient information at the point of care.

Just as important is making sure the information attributed to the patient is correct. Simple errors in the entry of information, using a nickname or the absence of a social security number, can all impact patient information and its successful transmission.

In Michigan, we have a solution to improve patient matching across organizations – Common Key Service. The “common key” is a unique, not human readable attribute assigned to every patient.

Organizations utilizing the Common Key Service will be able to ensure they are talking about the same unique patient as an external identifier that can integrate within an existing electronic medical record system.

In addition to improving patient identification, patient safety and care coordination is significantly improved using the common key.

Additional benefits include:

  • Reduce reliance on traditional patient identifiers
  • Avert medical errors
  • Improve fraud detection
  • Identify and resolve gaps in care
  • Reduce burden on providers
  • Improve patient privacy and data integrity


Supporting Documents:

Common Key Service (CKS) Implementation Guide

For additional information on Common Key Services, contact:

Health Plan Liaison
Matt StromerPre-Onboarding Engagement Analyst

Healthcare Provider Liaison
Maureen JohnPre-Onboarding Analyst