Health Information Management

Q&A: E-mail communication

HIM-HIPAA Insider, August 10, 2009

Q. Can we ask patients whether they want to sign a release stating that they want to communicate by e-mail with their physician and that they understand that we do not have a secure system?

A.
Yes. E-mail communication between patients and providers is becoming increasingly common, but you should not do this without carefully considering how it will work and what limitations you should place on e-mail communication.

Editor’s note: Mary D. Brandt, MBA, RHIA, CHE, CHPS, answered this question. This is not legal advice. Consult your attorney regarding legal matters.

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