Study: Electronic messaging should be part of physicians’ job description

January 16, 2015

As participation in patient portals grows, so, too, does the number of electronic messages sent between patients and physicians, showing a need for reimbursement and clinical structures that allow physicians to make use of the tool, according to a study published this month in Health Affairs.

The study looks at the use of messaging through patient portals at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston over a span of a decade–from 2001 to 2010. At the end of the study, more than 49,500 patients enrolled in the portal, and of those, 36.9 percent sent at least one message to a physician.

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