Editorial: How Best to Use Email with Patients

Email is a great way to communicate with patients, but it is important that doctors follow guidelines on its use, say Helen Sowerbutts and Caroline Fertleman

Many industries have been revolutionised by the use of email, and parts of Europe and North America have embraced its use in healthcare.[1] Today’s focus on patient centred care and accessibility means that email will become a key method of communication with patients.

However, considerable apprehension exists in the United Kingdom. Although medical protection agencies and the General Medical Council have published basic guidance,[2]anecdotal experience suggests that many clinicians are unaware of this or unsure of how it applies to their practice.[3] Doctors are using email without referring to guidelines, with potential patient safety and medicolegal implications. Continue reading Editorial: How Best to Use Email with Patients