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HIPAA-Compliant Text Messaging and Why You Need It

HIPAA-Compliant Secure Text Messaging

Running a hospital presents a variety of unique challenges. It is like many other businesses as it requires effective leadership and communication to run smoothly, but the extra factor is the importance of timeliness. All businesses require quick employee response, but this could not be truer for a healthcare facility. Patients and their health can be unpredictable. There should be a method of reaching healthcare professionals in a timely manner while still protecting the sensitive information being transmitted.

For years, the pager was the device of choice used by healthcare professionals. however, pagers have not necessarily adapted with the times and have very few features relative to today's technology. For these reasons, cell phones have become a better and more effective method of messaging. Yet, security is a corresponding issue, as text messages are stored by providers or the applications over which they are sent. These systems are not always HIPAA compliant.

Text messaging is an everyday part of people's lives now, and consumers of all ages have learned to adapt to new texting technologies. Allowing employees to use devices they are familiar with outside of the workplace is a way to implement new technologies without transition problems. By giving doctors, patients and health practitioners the ability to respond to a problem as soon as they see the message, they are able to work much more efficiently while still transmitting protected health information.

Empirical evidence shows just how effective a secure messaging platform can be. Imprivata, a provider of secure text messaging, conducted several studies on their own program, Imprivata Cortext. Community Healthcare and Wellness Centers in Ohio implemented Imprivata Cortext in their own centers. As a result, their Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) score increased by 30%. They experienced a 10% return on investment as well as a 15 minute reduction in admission time. Imprivata Cortext's research alone shows how transitioning to a secure text messaging system can be a wise economic decision.

Even if you are not a healthcare provider or only provide services to a healthcare provider, you can benefit from having secure text messaging. It allows employees at any company to communicate sensitive information in a timely manner without fear. The benefits reaped by the healthcare industry may be applied to many other industries in light of the emphasis on efficient communication and coordination. Additional benefits such as higher return on investment and increased productivity are important to companies as well. Whether or not you are in the healthcare industry, your business will benefit from the ability to quickly and securely send messages containing confidential and private information.