An embodiment of the present invention pertains to an electroluminescent lighting device for area illumination. The lighting device is fault tolerant due, in part, to the patterning of one or both of the electrodes into strips, and each of one or more of these strips has a fuse formed on it. The fuses are integrated on the substrate. By using the integrated fuses, the number of external contacts that are used is minimized. The fuse material is deposited using one of the deposition techniques that is used to deposit the thin layers of the electroluminescent lighting device.