Text messaging clients may seem like the future for many businesses, but it’s not always suitable for healthcare. Covered entities need to consider HIPAA compliance when choosing a text messaging provider.
Let’s review Zipwhip and if it meets HIPAA security rules.
What is Zipwhip?
Zipwhip lets businesses communicate with clients using text messages. Its software enables you to text using your desktop, web browser, or mobile device.
Zipwhip and the business associate agreement
One key factor to consider when choosing a text messaging provider is the business associate agreement (BAA). This agreement ensures that business associates, like mobile providers, follow HIPAA rules and are in compliance.
Zipwhip and similar companies are business associates because if they receive protected health information (PHI). Some PHI examples include names and appointment times. Since these companies have access to sensitive data, they need to be HIPAA compliant with their data security.
SEE ALSO: Is a Name PHI?
While the Zipwhip website says it can be used as part of a healthcare provider’s HIPAA solution, it doesn’t mention any willingness to sign a BAA. Zipwhip is automatically not HIPAA compliant if there is no BAA signed.
Zipwhip and data security
Zipwhip does use encryption with its text messaging software. The company protects sensitive and proprietary text messages with encryption in transit and at rest.
While encryption can help with technical safeguards, it’s unclear if Zipwhip implements other essential safety measures to protect PHI, like denying access to unauthorized users.
Is Zipwhip HIPAA compliant?
Zipwhip may not be HIPAA compliant. The company isn’t transparent about if it is willing to sign a BAA, and some data security features may be lacking.
An easier way for HIPAA compliant communication
HIPAA compliant email lets you easily communicate with patients without increasing your risk of a data breach.
Paubox Email Suite seamlessly integrates with your current email providers like Google Workspace or Microsoft 365. It sends emails using the latest TLS 1.3 encryption protocol, and emails are delivered directly to your patients’ inbox—no more client logins or third-party portals.
If you’re looking to use email marketing, consider Paubox Marketing. This is a HIPAA compliant marketing solution that allows you to send personalized emails to grow your business and increase patient engagement.
SEE ALSO: Healthcare Email Marketing Use Cases
Paubox signs a BAA with healthcare providers to ensure that HIPAA security rules are met. We have appropriate safeguards in place to protect your emails.