Think communicating with patients online is risky? One risk-minded malpractice\t\tcarrier will lower your bill if you do.\n\nThe company, Northwest Physicians Insurance, discounts premiums for doctors\tthat use iHealth,\ta set of online services that include a practice website, a personal health\trecord for patients, and secure messaging, which is encrypted and password-protected,\tunlike regular e-mail. With secure messaging from iHealth, patients can receive\tlab results and automated messages about FDA drug recalls and warnings, request\tprescription renewals and appointments, and ask questions about non-urgent clinical\tissues. iHealth is offered by Medem, an IT company formed by the AMA and several\tother medical societies.\n\nDoctors who implement these iHealth services receive patient safety points\tfrom Northwest Physicians Insurance that translate into annual premium savings\tof $375 to $2,250, depending on a doctor’s specialty. Northwest Physician\tinsurees can purchase iHealth for $295 a year, $100 off the regular price. \n\nA press release from the insurance company and Medem quotes a Northwest Physicians\texecutive as saying that improved doctor-patient communication can ultimately\tcontribute to “reduced professional liability.” \n\nSign up to receive Medical Economics InfoTech Bulletin newsletter, our update on medical technology news delivered every two weeks. You can also subscribe to our new issue alerts, personal financial advice newsletter, and conference updates.