Use of Telemedicine to Communicate with Patients: experience with Healthtap
In the last few years, all physicians have seen a blossoming of open communication with patients regarding their medical conditions by email and text. This has always been a concern to me and many of my colleagues but we did not have a more secure way of communicating with patients in real time.
A patient first told me about Healthtap noting she liked having a record of all the communications with her physician so she did not mis-interpret statements made on the phone. We looked into Healthtap and found it to be a secure, HIPPA (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act) compliant site, which made our compliance officer very happy.
Thus I started using Healthtap to give patients a chance to connect with me in a secure way and still have a record of our discussion. This has saved patients and me time in not having to write down everything we say in our conversation and helps assure we are both on the same page with the diagnosis, lab results, and treatment plan.
Here is the email and text that goes out to our patients if they ask to communicate by email or text. All the proceeds made from Healthtap go to charitable organizations and thus far many of our patients have been open and very generous to contribute and communicated in this manner for charity.
Please let me know if you have any suggestions or comments.
Sandra Lora Cremers, MD, FACS