NDMA is proud to offer this application to all NDMA members. The app is up and running! We already have a couple dozen members signed on and we are working on spreading the word. Invite your colleagues and care team members to utilize the application today. In your app store on your smartphone or tablet, simply search for DocBookMD. From there, you can install it and say hello to secure communication. Download DocBookMD today!
New App Allows for HIPAA-Compliant Texting
Few people need to be convinced of the advantages of texting. It may be the fastest and most efficient way of sending information in a given situation. Reports show that texting among physicians is widespread and that they are texting clinical information — whether it is legal to do so or not. Physicians who text each other clinical information risk exposing themselves to privacy and security violations of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA.)
But a new smartphone app is changing all that.
Physicians now have the option to text each other patient information in a secure, HIPAA-compliant manner, thanks to an app called DocBookMD. DocBookMD is a physician-only smartphone app that allows physicians to:
- Send HIPAA-compliant text messages and photos
- Assign an urgency setting to outgoing text messages
- Search a local pharmacy directory
- Search a local medical society directory (including email addresses and photos)
- Invite your staff to communicate with you through the app
“DocBookMD allows you to look up another doctor at the point of care. You can then either call the physician or send a text message with room numbers, medical record numbers, even pictures of wounds and x-rays. And all of this is sent securely and in a way that meets HIPAA requirements,” says Dr. Tim Gueramy. Dr. Gueramy, an orthopedic surgeon from Austin, Texas created DocBookMD with his wife, family physician Tracey Haas.
HIPAA-compliant text messaging
Message content can include patient information, such as diagnosis, test results, or medical history. Physicians can also add a high-resolution image of an EKG, an x-ray, lab report, or anything that can be photographed with a smart phone to the message.
Messages can then be sent using the app’s messaging priority system. Physicians can assign each message a 5-minute or 30-minute. “If the recipient does not answer the message within 5 minutes or if the message does not get to the doctor, you will then get a message back stating that it did not make it,” says Dr. Gueramy. “You can see and hear that the message you receive is different from any other text.”
All messages sent using DocBookMD meet HIPAA’s requirements for encryption and the security of protected health information. This is accomplished through technology that keeps everything encrypted on the DocBookMD server. Messages are not downloaded to the phone, but are viewed from the phone. For added security, physicians are required to sign a HIPAA agreement before using DocBookMD.