Healthcare organizations have come a long way in adopting technology to improve patient communication and care. The rise of HIPAA-compliant messaging has given hospitals, physician practices and health insurance offices a simpler method of sharing electronic protected health information (ePHI).
But it’s important to note that not all messaging technology is suitable for use in healthcare organizations. More recently, HIPAA legislation was updated to mandate a specific set of requirements for organizations relying on mobile messaging solutions. These requirements act as safeguards to ensure the security of patient information is never compromised.
Breaking Down HIPAA-Compliant Messaging Solutions
Mobile messaging solutions are a game-changer for healthcare organizations that have historically relied on antiquated methods of communicating patient information. Yet it’s important to note that not every messaging solution can be used for internal communications. Consumer-grade messaging platforms pose a series of risks, including:
- Security Vulnerabilities – Traditional, consumer-grade messaging apps deploy low-grade security, exposing messaging to unauthorized viewing and interception.
- Lack of Account Control – When employees use everyday applications, IT administrators have limited access and controls over messaging accounts.
- Limited Storage Capabilities – Information and messages can stay on senders’ and receivers’ phones, and are only deleted when users make a specific action to do so.
Here’s What You Get With HIPAA-Compliant Messaging
Don’t let the risks associated with consumer-grade messaging technology put you off the idea of using software in your healthcare organization. A HIPPA-compliant messaging solution quickly mitigates these risks through very specific functions, allowing you to enjoy the benefits and easy-to-use nature of instant messaging technology:
- Security – HIPAA legislation mandates strict security measures for messages containing ePHI. A robust HIPAA-compliant messaging solution uses bank-level encryption (at least 256-bit) to protect messages as they’re sent. Some platforms also use elliptical key exchange, a system that scrambles messages during transmission to avoid third-party interception.
- BYOD-Enabled – A HIPAA-compliant messaging solution means there’s no need to outfit your entire organization with mobile devices. Find a messaging app that is compatible with both iOS and Android devices, and have employees download the software to their phone. Once they log in with unique user information, employees can start using the messaging function immediately.
- Storage – There’s a section of HIPPA regulations that specifically addresses how messages and data are stored. To meet compliance requirements, HIPAA messaging technology needs to offer centralized, cloud-based storage capabilities. Messages should be easily accessible to account administrators, and automatically deleted within a designated timeframe.
Ready for HIPAA-Compliant Messaging That Delivers?
When you’re ready for a HIPAA-compliant messaging solution guaranteed to completely transform internal communication practices, choose NetSfere. We provide organizations with a private, highly secure texting platform that meets all HIPAA standards. Incorporating a BYOD policy? No problem. Our user-friendly application works with both iOS and Android operating systems, so employees will be up and running with new messaging software in no time.
Your search for a robust HIPAA-compliant messaging solution is over. To get started, contact us today.