Accountability Act (HIPAA). Email is also important for more formal and professional intra-department or intra-system communications.
Explore This IssueSeptember 2017
“When residents are on call and need to schedule follow-up for certain patients, they will share that info via email since it is HIPAA compliant,” he said. In addition, “if I need to communicate with another department at our institution or at an outside institution, email would be the more professional and preferred way.”
Shiny and New
So if otolaryngologists and communications experts believe email retains a place in the way information is conveyed, why does the question of its impending death continue to be a parlor game for some?
“Because there’s always something new,” Dr. Moore said. “Because Messenger on Facebook looks a little bit flashier than email. Because now we have Periscope. Now we have Twitter. Now we have different types of platforms that message within each other. They all look flashier.”
Dr. Sinacori compared talk of the death of email to rumors regarding the death of the U.S. Postal Service, referred to as “snail mail” by most.
“If I needed a letter of recommendation [today], I would email my colleague and send an attachment with my C.V.,” he said. “I would not text them; however, I remember the day when I would have mailed—yes, with a stamp actually—a letter with [my] C.V. as a hard copy because email was less formal.”
Richard Quinn is a freelance medical writer based in New Jersey.