Secure texting in healthcare

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Why Use Secure Texting For Healthcare?

Secure texting is a communication method that enables users to exchange encrypted messages, ensuring the privacy and confidentiality of the shared information. 

Encryption ensures that the messages remain inaccessible to anyone without the encryption key. Various encryption techniques are employed to guarantee that only the intended recipient can access the messages.

But why ‘secure texting for healthcare’? Isn’t regular texting secure?  

When communicating with patients, regular texting is not considered a secure method for sharing protected health information. This is because regular SMS can be easily intercepted and accessed by unauthorized individuals, they lack encryption and are susceptible to data breaches as they are stored on telecommunication providers’ servers. 

If you are a healthcare professional seeking to communicate with your patients through texting, you require a secure texting platform. Before we move on to that, let’s understand what secure texting really means and how it is different from regular texting.

How is Secure Text Messaging for Healthcare Different From Normal Text Messaging?

Secure text messaging apps allow the use of advanced security features that ensure that any information you send out via text can only be accessed by the intended recipient.

Fun fact: Normal text messaging isn’t HIPAA-compliant by default.  

Here are some factors that make secure messaging stand out:

  • The information stays encrypted and confidential. This means it cannot be intercepted during transmission. 

  • The information transmitted can only be decrypted by the intended recipient. Even the service providers and network operators cannot access the content of the message! 

  • The messages sent by the provider can only be accessed with the encryption key. It also involves verifying the identity of the recipient. 

  • If someone with malicious intent is trying to access the message and fails the identity verification, they won’t be able to break into the platform through which the messages are being shared, which further avoids message tampering

  • The messages are shared using a dedicated texting platform such as Emitrr that offers such functionality. In the case of Emitrr, the user will have to enter the OTP received on their mobile number on the secure messaging platform to access the message. 

All such features aren’t available in regular texting, which makes it less secure and prone to data breaches. Hence, it is strongly recommended that you use secure messaging solutions to communicate with your patients

When we talk about sharing PHI or generally communicating with patients, patient portals are a popular way to do that, However, it should be noted that most patient portals are not HIPAA compliant as they offer general texting and no secure text messaging capabilities are built into these platforms. 

Do you know why? Let’s find out! 

Secure Text Messaging vs Patient Portals for Patient Communication

Patient portals are secure and dedicated online platforms that allow patients to communicate with their healthcare providers, access their personal health information, and manage their appointments.

Did you know that even patients prefer secure texting over patient portals

Here are some key differences between secure texting and patient portals: 


Basis of difference

Patient portals

Secure texting platform


Limited interoperability 

Can integrate with countless EHRs/PMSs


Lacks basic texting features, comprehensive access to medical records, and appointment scheduling

Offers a plethora of basic and advanced texting features to allow seamless communication 

User Experience 

Tough interface, difficult to navigate 

Friendly user interface and intuitive workflows

Learning curve 

Digital divide due to lack of access to technology in certain areas

Zero learning curve involved 


Limited adoption especially by the elderly 

No extensive logins required 

Top 5 Secure Messaging Healthcare Apps

1. Emitrr

Emitrr Logo

Emitrr is a HIPAA compliant text messaging app that healthcare practices can use for secure patient communication. 

To turn on secure messaging in Emitrr all you need to do is toggle on the secure messaging in the message box. By doing so the chat becomes end-to-end encrypted. 

To continue chatting in a secure way the patient needs to enter their mobile number and the OTP received on the said number. 

Aside from the advanced secure texting features, Emitrr also stands out in its Support, with a stellar 5/5 on Capterra. 

secure messaging in Emitrr

2. Klara

Klara logo

Klara is a HIPAA compliant patient engagement platform. With Klara, you can either send standard texts or encrypted texts. For encrypted messages, a link directing patients to Klara will be sent. This will help you stay HIPAA-compliant and keep patient information protected. 

Klara has a customer service rating of 4.3/5 on Capterra. 

3. TigerConnect

tigerconnect logo

TigerConnect is a care collaboration and patient engagement platform. It is a HIPAA Compliant platform, which adheres to patient security and privacy standards. It is end to end encrypyted.  TigerConnect scores 4.5/5 for Customer Service on Capterra. 

4. LumaHealth


LumaHealth is a HIPAA Compliant texting platform. Providers can communicate with patients securely. With HIPAA-compliant secure chat, providers can share test results with their patients and ask or answer any follow-up questions. LumaHealth has a Customer Service rating of 4.7/5 on Capterra. 

5. OhMD

OhMD logo

OhMD is a HIPAA Compliant patient communication platform. It ensures secure communication with patients through encrypted SMS links. Once the patient clicks on the encrypted SMS link, a secure chat will be initiated. 

Why is Secure Text Messaging So Crucial in Healthcare?

Secure texting for healthcare is important for several reasons while communicating with patients: 

  1. To protect PHI: The exchange of sensitive patient information between the doctor and the patient is something that needs to be private and confidential as per the HIPAA security laws to protect patient information. Communicating through unsafe channels would lead to a breach of privacy and might expose the providers to legal liability. 
  2. To build trust with patients: When information is communicated through a secure medium, the patient would also feel comfortable sharing their details and would be assured that all their personal information is safe. This would make them trust the provider and therefore strengthen doctor-patient relations. Secure text messaging apps can help you here. 
  3. To communicate on the move: When patients have concerns regarding their health but do not have the time or the resources to visit the doctor in person, they can simply express their concerns by texting. Doctors need secure texting to be able to communicate instantly and effectively with their patients, while also ensuring that the information exchanged is confidential. 
  4. Maintain compliance with HIPAA rules: According to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, healthcare providers and entities are required to safeguard and protect Patient Health Information (PHI). This act has rules for all entities with regard to handling PHI and also limits sharing the PHI without the consent of the patient. It is important for the provider to have a secure texting platform in place so that all PHI remains confidential and complies with HIPAA rules. 
  5. Keep track of communication: Secure texting is a great way to document past conversations or refer to any information that is required by the patient or the provider. Since all the information is encrypted and secure, both parties can easily store and access information via text.
  6. To access data faster: When you implement secure texting into your daily operations, especially to communicate with your patients, you can easily access data from them quickly and securely, without worrying about breaking any compliance laws. Any data you access or share cannot be intercepted during transit since the communication is end-to-end encrypted and can only be accessed by authorized personnel.  
  7. To manage potential risks: There are a lot of risks associated with texting such as man-in-the-middle attacks, data interception, improper data handling, malware attacks, and SMS phishing. Reinforcing secure text messaging helps keep all such risks at bay; provided that you use an encrypted text messaging platform that has all authentication and user controls and allows you to share data securely.  
  8. To coordinate care: To ensure proper coordination of care, you need secure texting as it helps improve the overall safety of your organization. With a secure network, your employees can communicate effectively with the patients and get real-time data. This further improves clinical workflows and maintains patient privacy. 
  9. To reduce errors: Secure messaging in healthcare helps accelerate clinical workflows which further improves patient throughput and improves clinical outcomes. This leads to fewer medical errors and improved patient satisfaction. 

Scenarios wherein healthcare businesses are more inclined towards secure texting:

  1. Businesses are aware of compliance: Healthcare businesses know that sharing PHI via text can lead to non-compliance and can lead them in trouble. Hence, they were not using texting to communicate with patients. However, upon realizing that there’s a secure way to text patients, they are looking for a secure texting platform.  
  2. Businesses are unaware of compliance: A lot of businesses didn’t know that they were texting patients in a non-compliant manner. This realization is making them opt for a secure texting platform. 

Use Cases of Secure Text Messaging

Here’s what all you can do with secure text messaging: 

  1. Doctor-patient communication: You can communicate securely with your patients in real-time and answer any questions or clear any doubts that they might have. You can share and receive information directly on a secure texting platform, which is otherwise not possible on the phone or normal text due to compliance issues. 
  2. Send reminders: You can send appointment reminders securely to your patients and follow up with them during the entire patient journey, without compromising their privacy. You can also send payment links securely to your patients through the encrypted text platform. 
  3. Share documents/results: Your team can communicate effectively with the patients by sharing intake forms, treatment plans, and updates securely. You can share EHRs such as MRI scans, X-rays, and other sensitive medical documents via secure text messaging. This further allows collaborative diagnosis and ensures better treatment planning. 
  4. Virtual consultations: Secure messaging allows virtual consultations in case the doctor or the patient cannot meet in person. This ensures continuity of care while also maintaining patient privacy. You can use secure messaging to discuss medication options, dosages, and side effects with the patients. This ensures transparent communication and makes the patient participate actively in their care process. 
  5. Post-discharge care: When your patient gets discharged, you can utilize secure text messaging to share medication guidelines, discharge instructions, and other follow-up care details. You can share important educational resources with your patients to help them understand their conditions and be more informed about the treatment process and after-care strategies. 
  6. Handle emergencies: With a secure texting platform, you can share real-time alerts and notifications with your patients in the wake of any public health concerns or emergencies. You can even remotely monitor your patient’s overall health by asking them about their vitals and other indicators. This ensures proper intervention and real-time assessment of the patients. 
  7. Provide extra care: You can easily provide care to patients with chronic conditions by asking for updates about their health status. If you’re treating patients with mental health issues, you can use secure texting to provide behavioral support. 
  8. Gather feedback: You can send patient survey and review links securely to your patients and gather patient feedback for the services provided. 

Templates for Secure Text Messaging

Here are some templates that you can use to text securely with your patients: 

Emergency Alert

“Good evening, this is {Business Name}. Due to inclement weather, our office will be closed tomorrow for the safety of our patients and staff. We will give you a call tomorrow to reschedule your appointments. We apologize for any inconvenience. If you are experiencing pain, please give us a call immediately. Stay safe and warm!”

Appointment reminder

“Hello {{firstName}}, you have an appointment at {{Business name}} with {{providerName}} at {{officeName}} on {{appointmentDate}}. 

 It is our policy to collect copayments and/or deductibles at the time of the appointment. Please plan accordingly. 

 Also, bring the list of medications you need to be refilled to your visit. This allows us to securely and efficiently complete refill requests.

 If your appointment is scheduled as virtual, you will receive a link from our registration desk before the appointment. You will click on the link and follow the prompts to connect with us.”

“Hi {{firstName}}. Perfect Smiles Dentistry is sending you a gentle reminder that you have an upcoming appointment on {{appointmentDate}}. You can reply with C to confirm the appointment.

  “”Smokers: Do not smoke before coming to your appointment and remember to brush your teeth for a better evaluation and treatment.”””

Payment reminder

“Hello, this is a friendly reminder that a copay of $15.00 is required for your appointment with your provider at the Psychiatric Wellness Center. We have upgraded our payment system, please follow the link provided in this text to make a payment.” 

Appointment rescheduling

“Hello, this is the {Business Name} about your appointment.

 For (DATE) (TIME).  We need to reschedule your appointment due to an emergency.

 Please call the office to reschedule at {Number}. We apologize for any inconvenience. Thank you.”

Feedback Request

“[First Name], your positive rating and or feedback plays an important role in helping others. Please select the link and leave us a review or a 5-star rating, Thank you!”

Virtual appointment reminder

To access your virtual appointment with Nadia, you will need to log into your patient portal account around your appointment time. Once Nadia is logged on, there will be a button to start your session.”

Treatment Updates

“Hello, this is {Business name} we appreciate your patience. We are texting to let you know that PETNAME is in recovery and the dental cleaning went smoothly. We recommend going home with CET Chews & CET water additive today to help maintain good dental health. Pick-up time is between TIME pm – and 5:45 pm. We will be happy to answer any questions you may have at pick-up. 

 Thank you.”

Knowledge Base

“Ovarian cysts are sacs, usually filled with fluid, in an ovary or on its surface. Ovarian cysts are common. Most of the time, you have little or no discomfort, and the cysts are harmless. Most cysts go away without treatment within a few months. Repeat imaging will be recommended to recheck the cyst.”

Reminder for Tests

“Hi, You are all set for Monday, June @ 9:00 a.m. to complete an updated background and drug test in our office. We are located at {Address}. We look forward to meeting you! Regards {Business name} Coordinator”

Insurance Verification

” Good news, {{firstName}}! Your dental insurance plan has been verified. The total estimated fee for your consultation and treatment is $277.00. This includes your visit with the doctor, two sets of radiographs, a CBCT scan, a cold sensitivity test, percussion test and root canal treatment. According to your benefits, your estimated portion is $150.00. And we’re expecting an estimated $127.00 from your dental insurance plan. Please let me know if you have any questions. We look forward to hearing back from you. Wishing you a wonderful rest of your day. Thank you kindly.”

The Best Secure Messaging App for Healthcare - Emitrr

It is understandable that texting by itself is not secure. However, it can be made secure and HIPAA-compliant if you use the right secure messaging app for healthcare. Emitrr for instance, offers a secure texting feature with which users can communicate securely. The messages are end-to-end encrypted and cannot be accessed by anyone except the user. You can easily share PHI with your patients using the secure texting feature, with a simple login process. You need not remember passwords or worry about security as Emitrr’s secure texting capability can handle it all. Here’s how secure texting works:  

Step-1: Open the Emitrr app and click on the relevant conversation 

Step-2: On the right side of the message box, click on ‘Start secure chat’. Doing so will send a link to the customer. 

Step-3: The customer can only access the messages by clicking on that link. All messages on that separate portal can only be read by the customer. 

To access the same, the customer only needs to enter their mobile number and the OTP received on that number. This 2FA makes the portal secure and free from any breaches. 

To understand this process in detail, check out this video! 


If you are a healthcare professional and communicate with your patients on a regular basis, then texting is the way to go. Not only will you be able to deliver a better patient experience but will also save time and resources. However, to ensure you comply with HIPAA rules regarding sharing PHI, you must sign up for a secure texting platform that allows you and your patients to communicate seamlessly. Are you looking for a platform that meets all your texting needs? Well, then we suggest you try Emitrr. Book a demo and see what this exciting platform has to offer! 

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