In a word…don’t do this!
I was in the office for a bit today, catching up on the endless paperwork. I needed to check my home email, as I was expecting some information. Imagine my surprise when I found an email from another office, who thought they’d just attached an individual’s chart to an email.
Email is not secure by any stretch of the imagination. The email (uh…just like the fax!) can end up anywhere. I could share that email account with an assistant who might be helping monitor my mail. Then of course, there are spammers and I have no idea what they get access to other than my email address (I would not be surprised to learn that it’s more than that). That chart most likely would have contained plenty of identifying data – like social security numbers, health insurance information, contact information, etc.
And you know what else? I only saw this person for a one time temporary disability exam. I did not request these records and have not accepted him as a patient.
Do not send charts via email unless you know it’s a secure service.