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Weekly Byte: Let Your Secure Messaging System Do The Sending For You
The best text message is the one that you don’t have to send.

Don’t get me wrong - I’m happy that we offer a feature-rich, user-friendly secure text messaging product. But I’m even happier that in many cases, we can use automation to remove the need for a person to manually send a text message at all. At the end of the day, security is great; compliance is great; knowing when a message was read is great; automated reminders are great; file and image sharing are great; group messaging is great; adding external contacts from the community is great; cross-platform (mobile + web) is great… but what’s REALLY great is saving someone time.

This idea is actually the origin story of our secure text messaging software. Years ago, I remember sitting with a charge capture customer who was explaining the process for following up with the doctors about charges that the doctors had submitted through the software. The customer would first add a note to the charge in pMD so they had a record of the follow up. Then they would send the doctor a text message asking their question. The text message itself seemed pretty harmless to them, so they weren’t in the market for secure text messaging software; but when we added the ability for pMD to send that message for them automatically, they became avid users.

Once we started down this road, we saw people manually sending each other routine, repetitive, and nonsecure text messages everywhere. Office receptionists were texting doctors about every new hospital consult. Answering services were texting doctors about nurse calls that occurred after hours. Specialists were texting each other to refer a patient, re-typing demographics that already existed elsewhere. Hospital doctors were texting PCPs (if they even had the person’s phone number) to let them know what had happened to one of their patients who got hospitalized. All of this messaging wasn’t just putting patient information at risk - it was actually costing someone time. Each individual message was fast and easy to send, but for these repetitive tasks, they added up quickly.

In a world where every major software company has its own messaging features, automation is the key to selecting the software that your people will embrace and that will keep giving back to you instead of simply checking a box on a HIPAA-compliance audit.