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The Modern Dental Practice

I modern dentistry_ email Secure your reputation with secure-mail Author_ Dr. Lorne Lavine _Your success hinges on your reputation. Patients remain loyal, or refer your clinic, because of how they feel about the care you provide. They want to feel they’re receiving the most appropriate care, and they want to feel you have their best interests at heart. The way you communicate with patients can significantly influence their feelings in both categories. By using secure-mail to keep patients and colleagues informed, you can strengthen and protect your reputation because you 1. Are able to more quickly inform patients about their care so they see you as a thorough practitioner (plus, as we know, more informed patients are more satisfied), and 2. Demonstrate your commitment to protecting patient privacy — a concern more and more important to everyone. _Secure-mail is familiar and new Although there is more than one service on the market called Secure-Mail, secure-mail is actually a product category. The idea behind these services is that you can share information in a way that is very similar to the user experience of email — data is shared via text or attachment; there’s a compose, reply and forward button; you have a contact list; and notifications usually arrive in the inbox of your regular email. Unlike traditional email, secure-mail services protect the privacy of the information contained within the message, eliminating the threat of a HIPAA breach. The way secure-mail builds in compliance and protects privacy is by keeping the patient-specific information that you exchange off the public Internet — where it can easily be intercepted and read by unintended and unauthorized recipients. Messages are stored in a central location that senders and receivers log in to using a web browser (such as Explorer, Firefox or Chrome) so they can securely access the information shared with them. The similarity to email is no accident. Everyone already knows how to use email, so implementing this technology into your office is effortless. More importantly, text-based email-like exchanges are preferred by patients and colleagues over phone, fax and mail for ease of use, accessibility and tracking of information, and the fact that communication doesn’t require alignment of schedules. For you, it saves time and money associated with calling, faxing and mailing or sending files via courier. 14 I

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