Patients Texting Doctors: The Pros and Cons

Modern business is all about convenience. For years, the healthcare industry had no choice but to fall behind with many of the more mobile and convenience-driven trends in technology due to information security issues and concerns about providing the best possible care for patients.

In healthcare, technology was typically associated with new types of machines to test for potential illnesses or exploratory surgeries with robot-assisted technology. For years, communicative technology was neglected because, many assumed, how can you improve on direct, face-to-face communication and testing?

Well, as it turns out, the world is changing-and so is healthcare.

“Doctors are losing patients to urgent care and telemedicine,” said Clinton Phillips, founder of the telehealth company 2nd.MD, during an interview with MedCity News. “They don’t have the tools to really compete.”

As our society becomes more dependent on mobile and distance interactions, the expectation for many patients is that they receive the same level of convenience from their healthcare providers. Texting doctors, while not yet entirely mainstream, may not be far away from an everyday reality for many practices.

If your practice is considering expanding its communicative capabilities into the telehealth realm, there are many pros and cons to consider before implementing a texting platform. The following are just a few of the many factors that may weigh on your decision to expand your telehealth capabilities.



While texting doctors may not always be the best way for patients to communicate with their healthcare professionals, it is certainly a convenient one. This form of telehealth doesn’t apply to all situations, but the options could appeal greatly to certain patients in certain situations.

However, implementing a texting policy and process is not without risks. Make sure to do your research, adopt the most secure and flexible technology you can find, aand always keep both your doctors and your patients in mind when exploring a new way to provide healthcare. Both are important to the health and wellness of your practice, which is just as important as the individuals it serves.

About the Author - Ashley Choate is a native of Jacksonville, FL where she lives with her son, dog, and three cats. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Jacksonville University with a BA in English and holds an MAED in Adult Education and Training. She lives for reading and writing, learning and teaching, and figuring out the day-to-day traumas and joys of mommyhood.