Electronic communication is addressing the need for convenient and timely exchange of information in virtually all facets of society. This paper outlines the current status of clinical electronic communication, including e-mail and secure Web messaging, among physicians and between physicians and their patients. It is intended to provide a summary of what is known about clinical electronic communications in healthcare: what is working, what the challenges are and what is promising. In addition, published guidelines and studies offer direction for incorporating electronic communication into daily practice.
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