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Texting - Use of Secure Text Messaging for Patient Orders

Can secure text messaging be used to communicate patient care orders?

Any examples are for illustrative purposes only.

No. After extensive discussion weighing the pros and cons of using secure text messaging platforms to place orders, The Joint Commission and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) concluded that the use of secure text messaging for patient care orders is not permitted (see The Joint Commission's December 2016 Perspectives article for additional information).

CMS reiterated their position on texting in a December 28, 2017, memorandum stating that CMS does not permit the texting of orders by physicians or other health care providers, regardless of the platform used. This information is available at the following website:  CMS: Texting of Patient Information among Healthcare Providers.

Manual: Assisted Living Community
Chapter: Record of Care Treatment and Services RC
Last reviewed by Standards Interpretation: April 27, 2022 Represents the most recent date that the FAQ was reviewed (e.g. annual review).
First published date: December 28, 2017 This Standards FAQ was first published on this date.
This page was last updated on April 27, 2022 with update notes of: Review only, FAQ is current Types of changes and an explanation of change type: Editorial changes only: Format changes only. No changes to content. | Review only, FAQ is current: Periodic review completed, no changes to content. | Reflects new or updated requirements: Changes represent new or revised requirements.

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