Doctors Warming Up To Email
from the not-quite-that-bad dept
Two years ago we had a post about how few doctors were willing to communicate with their patients via email. Some doctors were afraid they would be overwhelmed with email, or that important information would get lost in not being able to speak directly to the patient. A year ago, it sounded like the tide was turning as a study showed that doctor-patient emails were generally very helpful. Now, it appears the doctors are catching on. Many more are emailing with patients and find that it’s been very useful. Often, patients are better able to express what they’re feeling when they get to write it down, rather than when faced with the doctor in the white coat staring down at them. Certainly, some people abuse the communications channel, but it sounds like very few do – and the positives greatly outweigh the negatives. Still, there are some doctors who are concerned that they don’t get to charge for email consultations, and are trying to figure out ways around that. Realizing this is becoming an issue, some health insurance plans are covering doctor email consultations in addition to regular visits.
Comments on “Doctors Warming Up To Email”
No Subject Given
My doctor communicates via email and it is extremely useful when communicating follow up information pertaining to a treatment or med. My spare time is limited and it really helps not to have to go through an answering service (that doesn’t copy the message down exactly) or make another appointment.
No Subject Given
I’m glad to hear that. Doctors are some of the most technically inept people I’ve ever come across.
Re: Liability and Reimbursement
The biggest reason why Physicians are slow to adopt new technologies, such as e-mail, is that they are concerned about increasing their liability exposure. No one wants to be the losing test case that establishes legal precedent.
The refusal of insurance companies to reimburse Physicians’ use of a new techology (e.g. e-mail instead of an office visit) also discourages adoption of new technologies.
doctors accepting emails from patients
Hey great blurp about docs and emails. I’m a med student in Kansas and i’m shocked how little technology is used to run the business of healthcare (if banks were this disorganized we’ld all keep our $$ in mayoniase jars). There’s a great doc in seatle, i can get his name for you, how is charging for emails. For a yearly rate, pt’s have unlimited access and they love it. He has a paperless office so the whole process is seemless from email to chart. Plus, his malpractice co. helped him set it up and loved it so much they lowered is premiums! In some cases of pt’s with anxiety issues, its actually delivering a higher level of care.
Re: doctors accepting emails from patients
Hey Josh — I’m writing an article on how doctors are warming up to email in their practices and I’d be interested in knowing the name of the doctor in Seattle who is giving his patients email access. Would love to talk to him about his experiences.