The results of a recent survey conducted by Johns Hopkins University, Brigham and Women's Hospital, and CVS Health point to a clear conclusion: It is time to give more than lip service to finding a mutually agreeable way for patients and their providers to communicate electronically beyond “official” platforms such as EHRs and patient portals.

The survey, which gauged patient use of, and interest in, using email, provider websites, and social media – specifically Facebook – was published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

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