Leveraging OhMD’s Secure Text Messaging Platform for Mental Health / Counseling

We know mental and behavioral health professionals text a lot.  Whether you’re a therapist, social worker, psychologist or psychiatrist, chances are you already text with patients and referring providers.  OhMD is a free, secure platform that offers the convenience of texting without the security risk.

Texting with patients:

In the counseling field, it’s imperative to be accessible to patients, and OhMD gives you an easy, HIPAA compliant solution to stay connected.  With OhMD mental health professionals can be accessible to their patients via text without giving out their personal cell phone numbers or incurring costly HIPAA violations.

OhMD allows you to communicate with your patients about everything from scheduling to crisis situations.  Use OhMD to confirm appointments, and give your patients an easy way to contact you if they need to schedule or reschedule an appointment.  For those times when a patient might text about a more clinically significant issue, we offer you the ability to save those conversations in PDF format to be added to the patient’s record.  And because our basic texting platform is free to use, you can improve efficiency without incurring additional overhead costs.

Texting with colleagues:

OhMD allows you to easily collaborate with other healthcare providers.  Text your colleagues to coordinate on a patient’s care plan, and stay accessible to referring providers.  OhMD’s HIPAA-compliant texting solution allows you to have meaningful conversations with colleagues about patient care without the risk of a HIPAA violation.

OhMD is a free texting solution…what exactly does “free” mean?

Free means free.   There are no in app advertisements or limitations on the number of messages you can send with OhMD. OhMD is available for download in the App Store or Google Play Store, so you can download the app get started today.

“I run my practice very lean.  OhMD allows me to better manage my schedule without the overhead cost of hiring additional staff.”

“My patients love that they have a way to text me, and I love that I don’t have to give out my personal cell phone number anymore!”

Leveraging OhMD’s Secure Text Messaging Platform for Concierge Medicine and Direct Primary Care

The Concierge Medicine and Direct Primary Care (DPC) models are built on the promise of providing the highest level of service to patients.  Many concierge providers give patients their personal cell phone number so that they can be accessible by text 24/7.  With OhMD you can deliver that same level of accessibility to patients without the risk of a HIPAA violation.

OhMD can be a key differentiator in marketing your practice.  By using OhMD you let patients know that you are concerned about the security of their health data, and patients love the ease of using our app.  OhMD also allows you to document text conversations with patients, either through our free PDF export or through direct integration with your EMR.  OhMD will set you practice apart from other practices that rely on the complicated patient portal for patient communications.

The Concierge and DPC models in some sense texting allows providers to field patient messages at their convenience, to respond to each message in a matter of second, and to automatically document the interaction in the patient’s electronic medical record.

OhMD Features:

  • OhMD allows you to communicate with colleagues and staff within your practice and colleagues from other organizations.  This means you can use one application to manage all your referrals and complex cases.
  • With OhMD you don’t need to worry about receiving patient texts 24/7.  You can customize your availability settings to determine when you want to receive OhMD messages and the response patients receive after hours.
  • It’s free.  There’s no catch.

“The concierge model redefines the traditional patient visit.  My patients pay a premium to have access to me, and OhMD gives me an easy way to manage my patient contacts.”

“The level of follow up I can provide with OhMD makes parents feel like they’re actually being followed and cared about.  The patients feel like they’re a VIP.”

“Using OhMD contributes to a reduction in overhead which means that I don’t need to take on as many patients and can focus more on their individual care.”

Leveraging OhMD’s Secure Text Messaging Platform for Primary Care

Primary care practices are the hub of a patient’s medical care.  In a primary care practice providers need to provide a high level of patient care while seeing as many patients as possible, and minimize costs.  What if you had a solution that helped drive patient volume and reduced call volume by up to 30%, allowing staff to be more efficient and productive?

Drive Patient Volume

Primary care providers and staff spend too much of their day doing activities that don’t generate revenue for the practice, over half of their day on average in fact.  That includes documentation in the EMR and playing phone tag with referring providers, pharmacies and patients.  OhMD can help alleviate these pain points.

The majority of Americans would prefer to text than to call, especially when they have to contend with complicated phone menus, long hold times, or voicemail.  With OhMD patients can text the office to schedule an appointment, cancel an appointment, or determine if an in-office appointment is necessary.  That allows providers to fill their schedule, reduce no-shows, and allows staff to better triage same-day appointment requests.  Although CMS doesn’t currently reimburse for asynchronous telehealth services, practices can increase their revenue by giving patients an easy way to schedule appointments and helping staff improve efficiency.

Applications of OhMD in Primary Care

  • OhMD can also be used to share educational materials, and remind patients about health events like flu shots.
  • Photos can be sent securely via OhMD, allowing patients to text photos of rashes, wounds, and insurance cards, and providers can share images of lab results and x-rays.
  • Patients love OhMD.  Some primary care practices see over 80% adoption of OhMD — that’s way more than any patient portal.

Coordinate with Referring Providers

PCPs coordinate referrals to medical specialists, mental health providers, and pharmacies, and they are the point of contact for the hospital when a patient ends up in the ED or OR.  OhMD allows providers across the care continuum, even in disparate health organizations, to communicate and collaborate on patient care.  This not only makes life easier for providers, it also improves patient care and health outcomes.

OhMD Features:

  • OhMD allows you to communicate with colleagues and staff within your practice and colleagues from other organizations.  This means you can use one application to manage all your referrals and complex cases.
  • With OhMD you don’t need to worry about receiving patient texts 24/7.  You can customize your availability settings to determine when you want to receive OhMD messages and the response patients receive after hours.
  • It’s free.  There’s no catch.

“OhMD means one less layer away between me and my patients.”

“OhMD greatly increases patient satisfaction. This works like a portal is supposed to work, but because it comes to my phone I feel closer to it.  I can reply faster, it’s easier, and the patients like it so much better.”

Leveraging OhMD’s Secure Text Messaging Platform for Home Health

Doctors and nurses who work in home health are always on the go, and they need to secure way to stay in touch and manage their schedule. OhMD helps care providers at home health agencies communicate with colleagues, schedulers and patients.

Why use OhMD?

  • Use just one secure application to communicate with patients, collaborate on care delivery, and stay in communication with the central office regarding scheduling and billing.
  • No training required!  If your staff know how to send text messages, they will have no problem using OhMD 🙂
  • Manage your user accounts remotely.
  • Patients can send images securely, so you can better monitor wound care and post-surgery recovery.
  • OhMD is free, so you can improve efficiency without additional cost to your business.

Manage staff resources

OhMD makes it super simple for you to manage your user accounts through our secure web dashboard.  You can suspend accounts with staff turnover, and add new team members.  OhMD will also help improve efficiency and staff satisfaction.  This allows you to attract and retain highly qualified staff, and less turnover means less time and resources spent on hiring and training.

Better collaboration among care providers

Sometimes you just don’t know what kind of situation you will run into in the field.  OhMD allows nurses to communicate about their patients and collaborate on patient care.  You aren’t alone in the field when you have your entire team accessible to you through OhMD secure texting.

OhMD is a free texting solution…what exactly does “free” mean?

Free means free.   There are no in app advertisements or limitations on the number of messages you can send with OhMD.   OhMD is available for download in the App Store or Google Play Store, so you can download the app get started today.

“OhMD makes it easier for me to stay on schedule.  My scheduling office can text me if a patient needs to reschedule or if something gets added to the schedule last minute.  If I’m with a patient, I don’t need to be interrupted to answer my phone because I can just check my texts.”

“I used to get nervous about texting my staff and with OhMD I know that I am not violating HIPAA rules and it makes it so much easier to communicate!”

Leveraging OhMD’s Secure Text Messaging Platform for Pediatric Practices

Like all primary care specialties, pediatric practices require a high level of patient engagement.  Kids get sick, parents get worried, and being accessible in those situations can make a big difference to patients and families.  But there are lots of ways that OhMD can use secure texting to help improve the efficiency of your practice.

Patient Experience –

There is no worse feeling as a parent than having a sick child.  OhMD gives parents and families peace of mind knowing that they can easily contact their pediatrician when they have questions, and some practices have seen over 85% OhMD adoption among their patient base.

Scheduling –

Most pediatric practices accommodate same day appointments when possible.  OhMD gives your patients an easy way to communicate with the office if they need to cancel an appointment, reschedule an appointment, or simply figure out if an appointment is necessary.  Our care team configuration allows staff to triage most patient messages, leaving only the significant clinical questions for the providers to handle.

After-Hours Care –

The cost of an after hours call service can be significant for a small practice.  OhMD allows you to effectively triage patient and family questions 24/7 if you choose.  Or, if you choose to limit your OhMD availability and retain your after hours call service, you can use OhMD to text with the after hours nurses regarding emergent patient situations.

Patient Centered Medical Home –

Primary care practices are at the center of a patient’s medical care, and many pediatric practices are officially certified as a Patient Centered Medical Home (PCMH) by NCQA.  This means you have a responsibility to coordinate care for your patients across the care continuum, embracing a whole-person approach to medicine.  Secure texting in a PCMH can deliver value in both quality of care and efficiency.  Primary care providers can use OhMD to text with specialists, hospital physicians and mental and behavioral health providers to ensure their patients are getting the highest quality of treatment across the care continuum.

“OhMD has drastically cut my overhead which is very important to me as I build my new practice. Previously I was looking at having to pay for an answering service/after hours nurse service, which was an expense that I just couldn’t afford as a solo practitioner. Working with OhMD I estimate that I’m saving at least $500.00 a month now.”

“I was able to follow up with the patient directly almost every day, and it allowed me to manage a condition that most doctors would end up sending their patients to the ER for.”

Three iOS and Android Apps that will Increase Physician Productivity

In September I went to the International Conference on Physician Health in Boston. My intern and I interviewed approximately 130 different healthcare professionals and providers on their favorite mobile apps to use on the job. About 60% of the providers I spoke with were internal medicine physicians and 40% were specialists. One complaint that kept coming up was the lack of network and communication options. Based on the information from the interviews, it’s clear that these three top apps are are valuable when running a successful and relatively stress free practice:

HIPAA compliant

Doximity UI

Doximity

Doximity is an online social network for clinicians. It’s also the largest medical network in the U.S with over 800,000 confirmed health professionals using it daily.  It’s basically LinkedIn for medical professional. This app was also built by Jeff Tangney the co-founder of Epocrates. This guy knows what tools doctors need and how to create them. As a clinician you should be looking into creating an account or already have one. The last popular tool Doximity offers is its HIPAA compliant fax feature. When it comes to communication in the medical field HIPAA compliance is a huge deal. Even though fax seems like old news it’s one of the few HIPAA compliant ways doctors can send PHI (other than OhMD).

HIPAA compliant

Epocrates UI

Epocrates

Epocrates is a medical reference application. This tool brings you the most up-to-date diagnostic and treatment information. We found that a lot of doctors saved a lot of time by using this app. For a busy doctor being able to use your time more efficiently is always a plus.

OhMD

HIPAA compliant

OhMD messaging UI

OhMD is a new HIPAA compliant messaging platform for doctors. Although its fairly new to the market its usefulness and value it provides to practices is off the charts. Of all the doctors interviewed, it was clear that another communication outlet for contacting patients was needed. OhMD’s founders, Nate and Ethan Bechtel, both have extensive background in healthcare technology and creating products that physicians use on a daily basis.

Are these tools necessary?

No, you can run a successful practice without these tools. Many healthcare professionals that do run successful practices, though, swear by these applications.As a medical professional you should give these three apps a try and see how it will make your job more efficient and more manageable.

How OhMD’s co-founder Ethan Bechtel became so interested in fixing healthcare

The CEO and co-founder of OhMD, Ethan Bechtel, is no stranger to healthcare and the life of a regular patient.

Like many kids, Ethan spent his youth playing soccer, skiing, snowboarding, and pushing the limits.  “When I was young, we would snowboard in backyards on snowboards without bindings” said Bechtel. “They had a rope connected to the front of a plastic board and that was it. So one day when I was 11, I fell and broke my left arm below my shoulder. That was the beginning of my patient experience.”

The first doctors to see x-rays of his arm saw something they didn’t expect. It was a tumor, and the doctors had serious concerns that it was bone cancer. Ethan was later diagnosed with an aneurysmal bone cyst in his humerus, which is a benign tumor that weakened the bone but didn’t have many more serious implications. 

It was the 90s. It would be a decade before electronic medical records became the norm. Ethan’s family was often stuck trying to track down his records and images from different specialists. They traveled around the country searching for physicians specializing in this type of pediatric tumor. Between the ages of 11 and 18, he broke his arm 12 different times, had 4 surgeries, and spent the majority of his childhood in a light-blue sling. His family often carried his records in hard copy just in case he broke his arm again.

It’s been 17 years since Ethan last broke his arm, but as a regular patient for so many years, he always wanted to improve the patient experience.

So, after college, both Ethan and his younger brother Nate entered the world of healthcare technology. They decided to create OhMD to improve the patient experience and physician collaboration by making communication as simple as possible.

“Back in the day, the only way to get the information you needed was by fax machine. So while the technology has improved, many of the issues around inefficient communication and lack of access still exist.  OhMD focuses on providing a simple way for patients and clinicians to communicate about any healthcare related information.”

Video: OhMD is all about simple communication for healthcare

We’ve made communication simple with a HIPAA compliant texting app that changes the patient experience. Check it out!

The Free Healthcare App Making Waves

OhMD is a new healthcare app revolutionizing communication in healthcare for free. Until now, conversations between physicians and their teams were relegated to slow and inefficient channels. A telephone call often turned into a voicemail, which often turned into a game of phone tag that would ultimately waste valuable time every day. While texting has been a preferred channel of communication outside of healthcare, HIPAA rules prevent the use of SMS or even encrypted texting apps like Whatsapp in the industry.

The OhMD app gives healthcare professionals a way to communicate protected health information (PHI) over a HIPAA secure texting platform. A physician can use OhMD to send any text message that needs to go over a HIPAA secure channel. It can be used by any healthcare professional to communicate with any other provider, within or outside any organization.

And for those forward-looking practices searching for more efficient ways to communicate with patients, OhMD does that too.

Practices can use the app to proactively reach out to all their patients, a subset of patients, or one patient at a time. Most practices are inundated with patient calls from open to close, so texting allows practices to reach patients in a far more efficient way. So instead of phone tag with patients to reschedule an appointment or to answer a clinical question, it’s a quick text message. Practices see as much as a 30% reduction in call volume and an instant increase in patient engagement as well as patient satisfaction.

The app is designed to protect patient information through the use of bank-grade encryption and centralized account management. All protected health information is securely stored in an encrypted database and no sensitive information is stored on user devices. If a user were to misplace their smartphone, not only is their OhMD account protected by a password and/or pin code, but their account can be disabled remotely.

The value of texting in healthcare stems from its simplicity.

The app was created to address a pervasive problem in healthcare: the inefficiencies around communications. With OhMD, patients can contact doctors and practices more efficiently with a simple, HIPAA secure text message, while also giving doctors a way to securely text with other doctors and colleagues. 

The platform was created by healthcare industry veterans for healthcare professionals and is being used across specialties by healthcare professionals of all types. Phone tag, high phone traffic and voicemails are soon to be a thing of the past, and texting in healthcare is the future.