When messaging medical professionals for networking purposes, it is important to be aware of the potential risks and pitfalls. Texting is an inherently insecure form of communication, and should not be used to discuss patient care information. If text messages are the only way to communicate, keep them short, professional, and to the point. Additionally, it is important to avoid expressing opinions in a text message about the care given to you by other people, unexpected events, or possible errors.
Instead, communicate your understanding of the facts using an appropriate format, such as in an incident report or during a post-event investigation. Text messages between doctor's offices and patients are an excellent way to violate HIPAA regulations, unless very specific precautions are taken. State laws on medical records and Medicare regulations set out how long protected health information must be kept by medical providers, and there are other laws that regulate how long health plans must keep participants' records. Texting has become a popular method of communication among medical professionals in recent years. However, it is important to be aware of the potential risks associated with using personal mobile devices for workflows. By following these guidelines, you can ensure that you are networking with medical professionals in a secure and compliant manner.