It’s been a long day in the clinic, made even longer by a patient whose difficult personality made it even longer. When a friend texts you asking why you’re so late, you type in some unkind (but probably true) words about the patient. But wait – do you really want to send that text?
You’ve all heard of the HIPAA regulations, and maintaining the confidentiality of patients. But texts? How could a text between friends get you into trouble? Worse things have happened. Anything you put into cyberspace is there forever. Texting something like, “Clinic was hard today – I shouldn’t have stayed up to watch the whole basketball game” could be discovered by a savvy attorney pressing a claim for a patient allegedly injured by your treatment.
Texting is a great way to communicate with your friends. Just don’t use it to talk about patients or situations that could possibly come back to bite you. It’s worth it to think a second or two about whether you really want to send that text.