The convenience of being able to communicate with health care organizations as well as directly with patients is exploding across the industry. However, the ability to do this securely, and in a HIPAA compliant way is challenging and requires significant investment by application makers. While researching the space, I came across some well made HIPAA compliant chat applications.
•February 6th 2020
With the explosion of new technology in healthcare communications, there are many applications in the market that make communicating with patients easier, while also keeping their Protected Health Information (PHI) secure. While researching chat with PHI concerns in mind, I came across some really great HIPAA compliant chat apps that provide the functionality needed for a wide variety of use cases in the healthcare industry that I cover below.
It doesn’t matter if you are a doctor in private practice, a nurse at the local clinic, hospital manager, or another healthcare professional – if you need to communicate with your patients remotely and securely, my list of HIPAA apps should help you find a solution that will work well for you.
Features To Consider When Selecting a Service
HIPAA compliant live chat is arguably the most popular solution when it comes to patient communication, but many of today’s applications are far more robust. Here are some of the main features you should consider when reviewing the apps below.
HIPAA Compliant Apps For Medical Professionals
These services are designed for medical professionals and organisations that require the use of a patient's PHI in regular, remote communications.
OhMD provides simple, HIPAA compliant texting for doctors. They allow patients to communicate with their care providers through secure text messaging, without needing to download an app. They greatly reduce phone calls, voicemails, and phone tag with patients - saving time, money and increasing profitability for doctor’s offices and hospitals.
Backline, from DrFirst, is a HIPAA compliant communication and collaboration platform. Backline allows patient-centered chat, sharing of clinical data, commentary, provider instructions for patient care and team access. It allows private messaging, group messaging, care team messaging, user groups and full-text search.
MedChat is a HIPAA compliant live chat, two-way texting, and internal team chat for healthcare professionals. A very interesting capability they provide is texting with patients, and then moving that conversation to secure live chat once they need to use PHI. Patients can even text the practice to kick off the conversation.
Luma Health offers multiple capabilities to help automate patient communication in a HIPAA compliant way. Not only do they have a secure patient chat, but they also provide the ability for patients to confirm/reschedule appointments and provide feedback after a visit.
Snap Engage’s Health Engage provides a secure, HIPAA compliant live chat solution for patient engagement. Health Engage allows multiple channel communication, from SMS to chat, tweet to chat, and Facebook Messenger. They also have some nice reporting capabilities showing team capacity, audit logs, and integrating with things like Google Analytics.
Well is a HIPAA compliant messaging platform that connects patients to healthcare organizations via text, phone, email, and live chat. They have a configurable workflow, unified outreach across channel types and personalized automated messages.
Well can send messages for many types of information:
- Appointment reminders
- Patient education
- Revenue cycle
- Lab results
- Insurance eligibility
- Patient satisfaction surveys
- Community/population health
Remember the old days when Trillian was used to tie together your instant messaging protocols like AIM? They’ve come a very long way. Trillian now has a HIPAA compliant messaging platform supporting private and group chats, surfaces critical information with urgent messages and shows read receipts. More interesting, they say that coming soon is Trillian Secure SMS, allowing providers to share sensitive information with patients without the need for an additional portal, app, or login.
Tiger Connect is one of the largest HIPAA-Compliant chat apps out there. They allow messaging anyone - doctors, nurses, affiliates and patients, as well as voice and video chat. One nice feature is role-based messaging. You don’t have to look up names, you can simply message the role you need and the app will check the shift schedule to find the right on-duty colleague. They also have secure, encrypted text messages and can do 1-1 or group chats.
HIPAA Compliant Services For Patients
These services are designed for patients that are in need of remote assistance by medical professionals.
Brightside Health brings doctors and therapists that are experts in depression and anxiety to everyone that needs them. In their words, the experts are licensed practitioners that “ensure you feel heard and understood, that you get the right treatment for you, and that you get the best results.”
Monument brings alcohol addiction treatment to patients’ fingertips. They customize the combination of community, therapy, medication, and a patient’s lifestyle to maximize the likelihood of success. With a dedicated Care Team of a physician and therapist, they will create a tailored treatment plan to achieve a goal of moderation or sobriety.
Build a HIPAA Chat App In-House
Are you looking to build your own patient communication solution in-house? Well then, you’re in the right place – we provide an embeddable HIPAA-ready chat solution! Learn how to build a HIPAA chatbot solution using Stream Chat combined with Dialogflow using Virgil Security for encryption.
In early 2019 Stream spent significant time, money and effort to make our products HIPAA ready. What that means is our customers in the healthcare industry can use our Feed and Chat services with their PHI (Protected Health Information) and be assured of its safety and security. We say that we are HIPAA-ready, as HIPAA compliance is the term used for the end-user application, whereas Stream is a service provider for those applications. Our customers can execute a BAA (Business Associate Agreement) with Stream to comply with their legal needs around HIPAA.
Stream Chat was designed and built to be the most feature-rich, scalable and high-speed chat solution on the market. If you’re building the next HIPAA compliant communication app and need the peace of mind that your chat experience is rich, secure and blazingly fast then look no further.