Medical and clinical communication using Email

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Use of email between doctors and patients
Some guidelines

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Medical and clinical communication using Email

  1. 1. Guidelines for Clinical Use of Electronic Mail with Patients
  2. 2. <ul><li>Medical communication between Patient-Doctor is considered privileged, and demands strict confidentiality. </li></ul>Features of medical communication- 1) Effective interaction between the clinician and patient, 2) Observance of medicolegal prudence
  3. 3. Advantages of using e-mail <ul><li>Accelerates communication of the written word. </li></ul><ul><li>Allows communication any time of day. </li></ul><ul><li>Does not need the attention of both parties at the same time. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Advantages… <ul><li>Provides a mechanism for sending the same health education information simultaneously to many patients, </li></ul><ul><li>Is simple, convenient and inexpensive to use, </li></ul><ul><li>Enables physicians to direct patients to health information on the Internet. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Informed consent for use of e-mail. <ul><li>Guidelines. </li></ul><ul><li>* Provide instructions for when and how to escalate to phone calls and office visits. </li></ul><ul><li>* Describe security mechanisms in place. </li></ul><ul><li>* Indemnify the health care institution for information loss due to technical failures. </li></ul><ul><li>* Waive encryption requirement, if any, at patient's insistence. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Practical implications - <ul><li>Patients to put their name and patient identification number in the body of the message. </li></ul><ul><li>Print all messages, with replies and confirmation of receipt, and place in patient's paper chart. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Categorize emails <ul><li>Patients to put category of transaction in subject line of message for filtering: </li></ul><ul><li>eg. </li></ul><ul><li>“ prescription,” </li></ul><ul><li>“ appointment,” </li></ul><ul><li>“ medical advice,” </li></ul><ul><li>“ billing question”. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Security <ul><li>Never forward patient-identifiable information to a third party without the patient's express permission. </li></ul><ul><li>Do not share professional e-mail accounts with family members. </li></ul><ul><li>Do not use unencrypted wireless communications with patient-identifiable information. </li></ul><ul><li>Perform at least weekly backups of mail onto long-term storage. </li></ul>
  9. 9. <ul><li>Do not use e-mail for urgent matters . </li></ul><ul><li>Both parties to use Auto-reply tool to confirm </li></ul><ul><li>receipt of message. </li></ul><ul><li>Maintain a mailing list of patients, but </li></ul><ul><li>Do not send group mailings where recipients </li></ul><ul><li>are visible to each other. </li></ul><ul><li>Use blind copy feature in software. </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC61279/?tool= pubmed </li></ul><ul><li>https://www.amia.org/mbrcenter/pubs/email_guidelines.asp </li></ul>Soul Thang Composed by: Scott P. Schreer, Stephen A. Love.
  11. 11. Dr.Neelesh Bhandari MBBS, MD (Path.) Sr. Advisor (Medical communications) edrneelesh Digital-medicine.blogspot.com

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