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POSTS BY TAG | Clinical Communication



Doctors spend so much of their time on the go, moving from place to place caring for patients. They see twenty patients per day on average, spending most of their extra time doing paperwork. We’ve talked a lot about efficiency as it relates to using technology to reduce administrative burden and complexity, to make time for what really matters most — your patients. But how can you make sure that the time spent with patients is being used to its full advantage? This is where effective communication is essential.



The Very Different Impressions of Doctor-Patient Communication


Studies have shown that medical professionals often overestimate their abilities to convey information clearly. The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery surveyed orthopedic surgeons after they met with patients, and while 75% of them believed they had communicated satisfactorily, when their patients were asked how they’d done, only 21% reported that their doctors had communicated well with them. That’s quite a significant delta and shows that two people can very often leave a conversation with completely different impressions of how it went.


There are a few reasons this can happen. Aside from potentially being in a hurry, dealing with as many patients as they do, physician burnout can lead to an increased detachment, which may cause doctors to misinterpret cues. It can be easy to stop treating patients as individuals with different needs and styles of communication.



Views on the Importance of Honest Communication Have Changed


While for much of the 20th century it was a common belief that giving patients hope and keeping them happy was more important than honesty, the modern schools of thought disagree completely. Patients who trust their doctors are more likely to follow their instructions, as well as provide them with the information they need to make an accurate diagnosis or treatment plan. Likewise, it is now understood that having a sense of understanding and control of your circumstances is much more beneficial to a patient than simply being comforted. 


Patients are more educated than ever before, and due to the ease and convenience of the Internet, they have resources at their disposal to form opinions and questions about their own health care. To get the most out of the time spent with patients, it’s imperative to treat the interaction as a mutually beneficial relationship.



Solutions for Improving Communication with Patients


Some proposed solutions include AIDET® Five Fundamentals of Patient Communication and The RESPECT Model. While slightly different approaches, they both have the same goal: ensuring that physicians are using the best communication skills they have at their disposal and fostering a sense of trust with their patients. It’s important to remember that each patient is an individual with their own set of needs that must be acknowledged and addressed.


If you are interested in learning more about pMD’s HIPAA-compliant secure communication and telehealth tools, please contact us here or give us a call at 800-587-4989 x2. We’d love to hear from you!


 

To find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our charge capture and MIPS registry, billing services, telehealthsecure messagingclinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.

Related Articles:

Patient Communication Tools for Better Patient Care
Healthcare Communication Solutions - pMD Much More Than Secure Messaging
Physician Burnout & How pMD Can Help

Injuries are tough. For student athletes, it can mean missed seasons, time spent on the bench, a distraction from classes, and sometimes...extra semesters to make up for it. And for the average adult, an injury can cause serious disruptions to everyday life, like less time playing with the kids, having to take off work, reduced mobility, and even loss of independence. 

Though for many patients, injury rehabilitation can be as much an obstacle as the injury itself. 

Certainly, navigating the web of providers and care settings can be a daunting and difficult task. For student athletes, this may mean coordinating care between doctors, physical therapists, athletic trainers, or some combination thereof. Similarly, injury rehabilitation for the average patient will likely involve coordinating care between some combination of doctors, physical therapists, chiropractors, or potentially even a home health care provider, depending on the severity of the injury.

In each of these cases, the sheer number of appointments, providers, and coordination that must occur can leave many patients feeling disillusioned, confused, and “out on their own” -- left to navigate this intricate web and direct their recovery themselves. What’s more, the siloed nature of this landscape leaves many opportunities for patients to “fall through the cracks” on their road to recovery. For more minor injuries, this intimidating landscape might be enough to convince patients that their injury rehabilitation can wait. 

Lack of Communication & Care Coordination in Injury Rehabilitation

Although the severity of the injury, the patient's circumstances, and the combination of providers needed to treat the injury are unique to each case, a commonality between any injury rehabilitation situation is that the patient serves as the vector of coordination between all points or providers. Patients are oftentimes physically carrying documents, forms, and their own PHI (protected health information) from one provider’s office to another. Certainly, this system is neither efficient nor free from error. The lack of communication and coordination in this setting makes both patient and providers' lives more difficult.

pMD’s Patient Communication Software Provides Solutions

Here at pMD, our mission is to improve patient lives, and in the process, make doctors’ lives easier. pMD’s secure messaging solution was born out of a need for providers within a practice to be able to communicate with each other. But over the past 5 years, we’ve expanded the platform, to allow providers to communicate with other providers outside of their practice, as well as with patients directly. Just recently, we introduced group messaging to our platform, allowing for an even higher degree of coordination between patients, providers, and caretakers.  

In the case of injury rehabilitation, pMD’s secure messaging platform gives patients the opportunity to communicate and coordinate directly with their providers, ask follow-up questions related to their rehab plans, and send and receive documents from their providers. Providers, in turn, are able to control conversations with patients, share secure documents, communicate about PHI freely, and coordinate with other providers, all while keeping their personal contact information private. 

In today’s ever-complicated health care landscape, communication and coordination are key to a quick recovery. pMD’s communication software serves as an elegant solution to many of the nuanced problems associated with injury rehabilitation and care coordination that currently plague this environment. In the process of improving system efficiencies within and between practices, we hope to make patients' lives better, so they can have that time back with their kids, get back on the field, or get back to work. Because that’s what really matters!

Related Resources:
Care Navigation is Everyone’s Business
Strengthening Communication in Health Care
Health Care Communication: Electronic Vs. Paper Follow Up for Millennials

 

To find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our charge capture and MIPS registrysecure messagingclinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.


As a member of pMD’s sales team, I have the distinct pleasure of speaking to a large number of individuals in the health care industry that are seeking better, more intuitive methods of communication amongst their internal team and with their patients. Most of the time, this outreach on behalf of the prospective client is done with this sole purpose in mind. However, these individuals are mostly surprised at the level of functionality and the communications risks that they can mitigate with a more robust health care communication solution product, like pMD,  that actually serves multiple purposes other than securely texting.

Today's world is a busy place and a premium is placed on our time. Efficiency is at the forefront of the majority of people's minds and any step we can take to make better use of our time is a must. Health care providers are often at the extreme end of this lifestyle. There is a lot to do, a lot of people depending on you and often there is not enough time in the day. 

Having a consolidated means of communicating with your team and managing your day can be a great time saver and allow for accurate and transparent communication amongst a care team. This is a reality for most of us in our personal lives. At this point in America, most of us have a smartphone that keeps us connected with the ones we love and a calendar to keep us focused on our day. However, in our professional lives, we are relegated to a team calendar in one location, printing our rounding or patient list from another, and sending vague, often cryptic text messages to our colleagues or office staff to communicate any number of items dealing with a patient's care. We have all done it and are equally guilty. It's the world we live in.

pMD Pro the Solution to Managing Healthcare Communication & More

pMD recognized this need to have patient, schedule, and communication management in one location and made it a reality in our pMD® Pro solution. Now, providers and their support staff have the ability to manage their rounding list, view their appointment schedule, and communicate contextually with their colleagues. Taking one step further, providers now have the ability to enter a shared clinical note for a patient on their rounding list. Since this is a shared note, all providers in the practice are able to view this note as well as make additional entries in the event of weekend on-call or cross-coverage. 

Private, Secure Communication Outside of Your Practice

All of this is very helpful and efficient being in one location, however, in today's world, the need to communicate securely goes outside the confines of our practices and colleagues. Due to the rise of COVID-19, the world has seen a drastic shift in many industries and health care businesses have been uniquely challenged because, pandemic or not, people still get sick and need to see their provider.  This has pushed telehealth from a minimally utilized novelty to an imperative must-have in providing care to our population. This brings to mind several questions: How do I do this securely? How do I keep my personal contact information private? What is the learning curve and success rate for my elderly population going to be?

All of these questions are valid and deserve to be addressed. Using pMD’s health care communication solution, the ability to communicate securely through chat, voice calls, and video calls is not limited to only members of your business. All of these methods of communication can be utilized with patients in a controlled fashion that does not expose your personal information as a provider. pMD’s solution from a patient's perspective is intuitive and simple. This is why it has been so effective for our current customers who have already deployed pMD telehealth to their patient population. If your patient has ever sent a text or received a FaceTime call from a friend or loved one, then they will be immediately successful in completing their virtual appointment with you.

Efficient, Automated Appointment Reminders

To bring the communication loop full circle, automated appointment reminders have been developed and put into place to confirm with patients in advance and drive adherence to appointment times. These reminders, once put into place, are automated and allow patients to confirm or cancel their appointment well in advance of the scheduled date. Having a confirmed cancellation gives the practice more time to either fill that open time slot or give the provider time back into their day, reducing wasted time. After all, efficiency with our time and diverting that newfound time towards more important tasks (like providing the best possible patient care) is the goal, right?


To find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our charge capture and MIPS registrysecure messagingclinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.

Helping practices and patients navigate telehealth



When we speak about pMD’s history in the medical industry, we always note that we’ve been around since the late 90’s and have focused on helping providers capture their charges. Despite our longevity in the industry, pMD is always looking towards the future. With the more recent events in health care, we continue to learn how best to support our customers.

pMD Quickly Deploys Telehealth Using Clinical Communication Tool


Beyond mobile charge capture, we have developed a comprehensive clinical communication tool. As our customers scrambled to change their delivery model for care, we were able to quickly deploy telehealth and improve clinical communication for many of our clients. 

Our customers needed a way to continue to provide care to their patients in a time of uncertainty. Our customers rely on us to help them communicate seamlessly with their patients. Our relationship-based approach allowed pMD to provide collaborative and consultative support to our customers and swiftly implement telehealth into their workflows.

The need for telehealth not only strengthened our connection to our practices but also provided pMD an opportunity to support our customers and their patients in a new way and help them navigate a challenging time. We pride ourselves in providing our customers with full 24/7 in-house support that extends directly to their patients. 

We’ve been able to help our providers complete tens of thousands of video calls and onboarded 108K+ patients since the onset of the pandemic. We at pMD feel honored to continue to support the changes in the health care industry, especially those related to telemedicine and clinical communication. pMD is proud to have a direct and positive impact through this pandemic.


Related Articles:
Balancing the New Normal: Support for Practices & Patients During COVID-19
pMD, the Most Valuable Player in Telehealth Platforms
Supporting Telehealth Patients Amid COVID-19, One Video Call at a Time

To find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our charge capture and MIPS registrysecure messagingclinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.


Recipe for Success


In 2013, approximately 7.96 million patients discharged from an acute care facility required some type of post-acute care service, representing 22.3% of all acute care discharges. With changes in reimbursement and providers assuming more risk, it is understandable that health systems and providers are seeking to better understand and manage this patient population.

Traditionally, post-acute care has been fragmented and disjointed at every level with little investment in creating a seamless transition across the care continuum. I entered the post-acute world in late 2009 and was astonished at the accepted paths of communication between health systems, providers, and the post-acute care companies caring for these patients. In my experience, I would say that the most accurate way to describe the coordination of patient care in this environment is ‘poor.’

In the overwhelming majority, there is no efficient collaboration between the acute care and post-acute care worlds. Providers have been left to piecemeal and bootstrap their own, oftentimes clunky and cumbersome, solutions for the ongoing communication required in managing this patient population. These solutions tend not to be secure and are woefully inadequate, lending to the issue of readmissions and sentinel events that have plagued our health care system. 

The amount of information that needs to flow between providers and the companies caring for these patients can be daunting, especially when the provider has another patient population to manage that is in the acute setting. Traditional landlines and fax machines are sadly the standard in coordinating patient care and the reliability is just not there. Today’s providers are busy and often will not immediately receive that fax or voicemail seeking orders to deal with a critical lab value, evaluate a concern for a post OP infection, or make decisions regarding end of life care. The RNs in the field visiting these patients have done the best they can with the means they’ve been given but the ability to securely communicate in an organized and timely fashion has remained out of reach.

As mentioned above, the days of patients getting readmitted to the emergency room due to inefficient communication are drawing to a close, thanks to penalties in reimbursements that providers are facing. There are options that exists today with pMD® Clinical Communication™ that allow for a seamless and timely flow of communication between post-acute providers in the field and the physicians that are following their care. 

This can currently be done in real time - issues brought up and issues solved by creating a secure, direct line of communication between individuals responsible for the care of these patients. The ability for a physician to quickly shift from one population to another, review pertinent historical information, and issue orders of corrective action directly from their smartphone exists. If properly implemented, it can make a difference in the outcome of the patients we serve and avoid the readmission penalties that have hurt providers.

With just a small amount of effort, the abilities and impacts are nearly endless in bolstering the communication between the acute and post-acute worlds. For example, the ability for a physician and collaborating pharmacist to receive an automated alert to their smartphone or desktop which is tied to a specific patient, would solve a persistent and frustrating problem in that community that often requires printed or faxed documentation. Oh, and it also creates a better situation for the patient, reducing the potential negative impact on their well-being.

This is just one example, but it is a scenario that I have seen play out numerous times over. Enhancing our communities’ ability to talk and share documents, photos, and video efficiently in a HIPAA-compliant fashion can improve outcomes and save lives. That is what we are here for ... isn't it?

Find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.


Chat with Patients: A Case for Secure Patient Text Messaging


Chat with Patients? A Case for Secure Patient Text Messaging

Recently, I was talking with a physician who is a new pMD customer. We were having a great conversation as she sought to satisfy her curiosity with how to get the most from the pMD software. Then I mentioned our new Chat with Patients feature, and she turned away from me, her previous openness instantly gone. She made a half turn away and laughed dryly, “Oh God. No.”

This was not surprising. The idea of patients having unfettered access to a doctor’s phone can seem like the loss of a last vestige of privacy, unfiltered patient needs adding to the cacophony of the many already trying to reach them.

So I shared a different story, one not filled with an endless interruption and immediate need. This type of communication can be better for both the medical provider and the patient receiving care. Surgery offers one compelling example.

Patient Text Messaging Before & After Surgery

Surgery represents a great opportunity to connect with patients via secure text for the following reasons: there is a clear episode of care, which includes a scheduled procedure, preceded by an instruction-filled pre-operative visit and followed by a post-operative period where concerns over pain, discomfort, new medications, and other follow up issues often emerge.

There are problems with other types of communication. Phone calls can offer endless rounds of telephone tag and voicemails, and email messages often are lost, misunderstood, or don’t have immediacy. Further, for patients who work, calls to workplaces and messages left can create privacy concerns. So, having a way to securely text and communicate in an asynchronous and timely way - texts don’t pile up the way emails do - can offer both better clinical outcomes and higher patient satisfaction.

Using Chat with Patients App Feature: The Process & Results

Below is the process for how a current pMD user is using the new Chat tools for text messaging with patients:

The scheduling coordinator invites patients who have a capable smartphone as part of their pre-operative process. She lets the patients know that pMD is a tool for them to have a direct contact as they go through their procedure.

She has found that younger patients have no issues with loading and using pMD and neither, to her surprise, did older patients. As long as they have a supported iPhone or Android, they have been able to easily download the app and get started.

Patient Text Messaging Helps Avoid Surgery Rescheduling

Prior to their procedure, patients commonly reach out to her with questions about the timing of the surgery, medications, and location of the facility where the procedure will take place. So far, at least one patient was saved from missing their surgery as they asked about a medication which, had they taken it, would have caused their surgery to be rescheduled.

Chatting with Patients After Surgery

The types of messages the coordinator receives after surgery often include those of the “what is normal?” variety, as well as questions about pain, medications, and the timing and location of follow up appointments. Having an easy way for patients to ask these questions helps avoid readmissions and missed appointments and allows the practice to stay on top of patient outcomes!

Secure Patient Messaging with pMD a “Real Life Saver”
The scheduling coordinator reports the following on using pMD as a tool to connect with patients:

"This has made such a huge difference in my contact with patients. They work, and texting them is so much simpler and more convenient than calling or email. I also love that it's not invasive. They don’t get my private info. This has been a real life-saver for me."

I also had the opportunity to connect with a patient using the platform, who reported more satisfaction with the care they received and a closer bond to the practice providing the care:

“Using the pMD app was a real anxiety reducer. If you have a question and something’s not right, you can get an answer through the pMD app. It’s immediate. You feel closer to the doctor and staff. It’s more personal. The app was very easy to download and use. I would recommend this to everyone! Doctor’s offices could really cut down on the number of phone calls. I would prefer practices that use this type of technology!”

I shared this story with the physician, and her demeanor quickly changed. Her practice is in the process of hiring a nurse to contact all their procedural patients, and pMD’s Chat with Patients would be a more effective way of connecting. With the right plan, secure patient text messaging offers unique and compelling benefits. Contact us and we will help you put a winning plan together!

Find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.
Related Articles:
Health Care Communication: Electronic Vs. Paper Follow Up for Millennials
Beyond Secure Messaging: Rich Communication Via Video Chat
What’s the Right HIPAA-Compliant Communication Platform For You?


Design Thinking: An Empathetic Approach to Innovation article


Design Thinking: An Empathetic Approach to Innovation

The original Apple computer mouse. A children’s toothbrush with a fat, grippy handle. pMD’s secure chat with patients. What do they have in common? They are all prime examples of products born from a thorough design thinking process.

What is Design Thinking?

At its core, design thinking can be defined as a human-centered approach to problem-solving. The process of design thinking is often simplified into five steps: empathize, define, ideate, prototype, and test.

Design Thinking Model

(source: Stanford d.school)

In my discussion, I’ll take a deeper dive into the first two steps (and arguably most important): empathizing with the human and defining the problem.

Empathy and Definition in Design Thinking

What do empathy and problem definition look like in practice?

In 1966, designers were approached to reimagine a children's toothbrush. At the time, all children’s toothbrushes were fairly similar: shorter versions of adult brushes, which were skinny sticks with a brush head. The designers spent a large amount of time simply watching children and adults brush their teeth. What they discovered was revolutionary -- children, unlike adults, gripped the brush with a clenched fist. In contrast, adults displayed increased dexterity and balanced the brush between their fingers. To tackle this difference, the design team created a new toothbrush featuring a thicker handle lined with squishy gel. An adult might not care for the design, but to a child, the thick handle and colorful, grippy gel made all the difference. That model quickly became the best-selling toothbrush worldwide...for the next 18 months. Needless to say, the rest of the market caught on, and now all children’s toothbrushes still feature the same original design elements: a fat handle with grippy gel.

The reason for the success of the children’s toothbrush is that the design team first empathized with the human (“Why is brushing my teeth no fun?!”) before defining the problem they were actually solving (“Why is my toothbrush difficult to use and hold?”). Connecting with the customer is arguably the most important part of design thinking, because without the human connection, designs often miss the mark for real-life use cases.

Design Thinking at pMD: Empathy is #1

Empathy forms the basis of all pMD interactions with customers. In meetings and on support calls, before diving right into what might be wrong or how customers might need our help, we first make sure to check in and ask how their day is going or what exciting plans they have made for the weekend. Talking with customers about their daily life not only shows that we see them as real people with real lives, but these seemingly trivial conversations can also yield intriguing insights into how we can improve our products. For example, when talking with some of our users, we found their day was less than ideal due to an increased amount of time spent playing phone tag with patients. This led to an internal discussion about improving provider communication with patients and ultimately resulted in a new Chat with Patients feature available soon for all users of pMD. Through constant refinement and testing, we eventually created a solution that both providers and patients love. This positive response stems from a deeply-rooted passion for the most important steps of design thinking: empathizing with people and hearing their real problems. At pMD, we wear many hats, but the one that we wear first and most proudly is the hat of empathy. When empathy and design connect, wonderful solutions abound:

Customer Reviews of pMD Chat with Patients

I urge you to challenge convention and speak to your customers on a more personal level. Instead of viewing customers as numbers on a spreadsheet, see them as people that you can help in ways you haven’t yet discovered.

Find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.


Health Care Communication: Electronic vs Paper Follow-Up for Millennials article


Follow-Up for Millennials: Paper vs. Electronic Health Care Communication

I am 23 years old and, unfortunately, I have already had my fair share of injuries and medical mishaps. These injuries have led to plenty of urgent care and emergency room visits, several rounds of physical therapy, and even a couple of surgeries. Each of these encounters has been accompanied by some varying amount of post-visit instruction from my health care providers, most commonly in the form of a paper packet. For physical therapy there were exercises, for kidney stones there were instructions on prevention, and with surgery came a list of symptoms to look out for after the operation.

Problems with Paper Patient Education Packets

The paper packets worked fairly well in a couple of regards: I always trusted the information I was getting, I could reference what the physician told me if I had forgotten, and I often had access to helpful diagrams alongside the instruction text. I was, however, very prone to losing or destroying the important yet vulnerable packet and the information it contained. All it took was one spilled cup of coffee, a visit from the overzealous family dog, or a well-meaning mass recycling effort, and I was back to using the internet to guide me or calling up my doctor’s office for information.

These paper packets came with a couple of other flaws. In addition to the extra paper resources used (save the trees!), they didn’t cover every single question that I hadn’t known to ask when I was sitting with the physician. Also, in the event I wanted to share the information with a friend or family member, I would have to find a scanner, to which I normally did not have access. I would usually settle for a photo from my phone sent over text messaging, which was a cumbersome process with a low-quality output. In the end, these packets served a limited purpose for a short amount of time.

Electronic Health Care Communication is Easier for Millennials

What form of communication would have been easier for an injury-prone twenty-something? In my opinion, the top priority is to deliver the information electronically, preferably on a smartphone. That way, I wouldn't lose the information provided by the medical practice and could easily share that information with others. Ideally, I would also have the ability to reach out to the physician in the event of a complication or additional follow up questions.

Of course, it is important that any health care communication tool does not become a hindrance to the physician or inhibit their ability to complete their daily tasks. In the end, I was looking for a mobile application that I could use to reference and share files that also gave me the ability to contact my physician.

Benefits of Communicating Electronically with Patients

The electronic delivery of information has more benefits than simply preventing someone’s dog from eating their post-surgery instruction packet. It also allows patients to access information more relevant to their needs, as well as make information more accessible and more portable. Patients can also have direct access to a knowledgeable health care professional, rather than turning to the dubious activity of searching their symptoms on the internet.

At pMD, we are dedicated to helping overcome communication barriers wherever they exist in health care. We are similarly dedicated to building software, including HIPAA-compliant text messaging with patients, that is up to the usability standards of modern websites and mobile applications. This dedication to quality ensures that everyone is able to use pMD’s software with ease, regardless of their comfort level with technology.  All in all, our goal is to provide more effective communication between patients and health care providers, ultimately resulting in better health outcomes for patients.

Find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.

Related Articles:
Chat with Patients: A Case for Secure Patient Text Messaging
Beyond Secure Messaging: Rich Communication Via Video Chat
What’s the Right HIPAA-Compliant Communication Platform For You?


Secure HIPAA-compliant Communication


Lately, it seems that more and more health care providers are increasingly interested in secure HIPAA compliant communication and the different platforms available to them. These providers and their support staff want to improve communication at their practices while still remaining compliant.    

As a member of our sales team, I’ve had the opportunity to speak with many of the interested practices who reach out to pMD to learn about what we have to offer in this space. pMD has two different HIPAA compliant communication products: our Free Secure Messaging and our more robust Clinical Communication option. If you just did a double take to see if you misread “free,” no, you were not mistaken!

Free or Paid: Which to Use for Your HIPAA Compliant Communication?

Are you curious about when our free option is the best fit for a user or when they might benefit more from our paid option? Continue reading to learn what I listen for when I speak with potential clients and help them decide which product will best suit their needs!

Using pMD’s Free App for Texting PHI

When I have the opportunity to speak with someone who is looking into the options they have for secure messaging, the first question I ask is, “What are your needs, and how many people do you need to message?” If the prospect tells me, “My colleague and I want to be able to message with each other about PHI (Protected Health Information) on our phones while remaining HIPAA compliant,” that is generally a cue for me that they have fairly simple needs and are most likely a good fit for our more basic Free Secure Messaging. Generally, groups with under five users that need to communicate basic information in a HIPAA-compliant and streamlined fashion are a good fit for our free product, and I suggest that they go to the App Store or the Google Play store and sign themselves up for pMD’s Free Secure Messaging. They can then get started right away!

I also often speak with groups who tell me about how much time they’re wasting trying to keep PHI out of their text messages by using cryptic symbols or hieroglyphics, and they end up having to just pick up the phone and call to find out who and what the message is even about! They recognize that they’re wasting even more precious time in their busy schedules and want a better solution that reduces inefficiencies.

When to Consider pMD’s HIPAA Compliant Clinical Communication

For larger groups who have complex workflows and more users needing to communicate about patients or securely send PHI, I suggest they evaluate our Clinical Communication product. Clinical Communication users can securely message using pMD on either their mobile device or the website, so they can stay compliant whether they’re on the go or stationed in front of a computer. pMD Clinical Communication also includes patient-centric messaging, allowing users to store a variety of information and message history. This removes the need to search through hundreds of messages to find one specific conversation with Dr. Smith about patient John Doe’s condition three weeks ago.

Texting Patients

Another great use case I often hear is the need to message with patients. This is a feature of our Clinical Communication product, which allows users to easily send messages to their patients while keeping their health information secure.

pMD Platform Update Offers Secure, HIPAA Complainant Video Chat

pMD is always innovating and working to meet the needs of our customers. We very recently released our new Video Chat function, so if you prefer a more face-to-face interaction with your colleagues, feel free to give it a try!

We hope that by allowing providers to communicate in a more streamlined and efficient fashion amongst themselves and their supporting staff, we can give them back more time to be doctors and provide care to their patients.

Contact pMD to Learn More!

If you’re interested in learning more about our Free Secure Messaging or Clinical Communication products, please submit your information here and we’re happy to help you evaluate which product would be the best fit for you! Don’t miss out on our signature text tone: the goat squeal!

Find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.

Related Articles:
Healthcare Communication Platform: A Picture Is Worth A Thousand... Lives?
Customizing Patient-Centric Solutions for Better Care: Clinical Communication That Improves Resident Training
Beyond the Call: Messaging with Patients in Health Care


Healthcare communication


Coordinating a patient’s care is complex. Professionals from a variety of disciplines deliver care to a single patient at various times throughout the day. Specialists may be traveling from several different locations from across a city to where this one patient is receiving care. And all of this complexity limits the chance for care teams to reliably connect with each other regarding the current plan for a patient’s care.  This is when inefficiencies and medical errors arise.

Ineffective Healthcare Communication Causes Medical Errors

The growing body of research on medical error prevention reveals that ineffective or insufficient healthcare communication among care team members is a significant contributing factor to adverse events. Ineffective communication is at the root of nearly three of every four medical errors. Industry studies have classified communication errors that led to inefficiencies and medical error into a few buckets:

1) Communication that was simply too late to be helpful for the patient.
2) Failure to include the whole care team in communication about a patient.
3) Communications that proposed an action where that action was not completed.

Thus, access to a common healthcare communication platform that can link up multiple providers and support clarity in communication during the critical seconds of need must be implemented to help stop avoidable medical errors.

Reduce Medical Errors with pMD’s Healthcare Communication Platform

At pMD, we’re passionate about reducing those avoidable medical errors and saving lives. pMD’s HIPAA-compliant clinical communication and free secure messaging platforms are one key way we’re doing just that.

1) We know that texting is a quick, easy method to connect a team and convey information that can save lives. So, we’re proud to provide a proven, secure communication platform to support healthcare teams - for free.  

2) Sending images securely, including labs, diagnostic images, skin conditions, or wounds post-surgery, can link internists to specialists, residents to attendings, and patients directly to triage nurses.

3) We know that with text alone, a message can lose the inflection, emotion, or intensity intended by the sender.  So, we’ll be adding the ability to send and receive voice memos, giving messages back the volume, pitch, rhythm, and speed that can help convey a clear message.

4) And we know that verbal and non-verbal aspects of communication can be vital in ensuring clarity. Therefore, we’ll also be adding HIPAA-compliant video communication capabilities, even to our free secure messaging platform, to execute care team huddles from anywhere, to facilitate the integration of specialists, and to even host telemedicine encounters directly with patients or medical decision-makers.

At pMD, we know a text, picture, voice memo, or video encounter can vastly improve the clarity of communication. By utilizing a common secure healthcare communication platform which includes the right individuals at the right time, we can reduce medical errors and save thousands of lives.  For more information, or to easily sign up for free pMD® Secure Messaging™, please visit us here!

Find out more about pMD's suite of products, which includes our MIPS registry, charge capture, secure messaging, clinical communication, and care navigation software and services, please contact pMD.