Critical Alert announces smartphone app for HIPAA-compliant messaging

Nov. 17, 2015

Critical Alert Systems, a provider of nurse call and messaging solutions for hospitals and health systems, announces its new Critical Alert Secure Texting (CAST) and paging app designed to work with smartphones. The CAST system enables two-way, encrypted, HIPAA-compliant communications between Web-enabled iPhones, iPads, Android phones and tablets, as well as computers running Windows 7 or 8.

CAST can operate as a fully functional stand-alone system or in conjunction with existing operator consoles, messaging software, or paging systems. It is scheduled for availability in early 2016.

“Healthcare organizations of all sizes have rapidly adopted smartphones and tablets to help improve patient care and communications between internal staff and external partners,” says Dan Shaw, Senior Vice President of Messaging Operations, Critical Alert Systems. “CAST provides a flexible, economical and easy-to-deploy secure communications solution for both text messages and paging.”

CAST allows clinicians and caregivers to instantly share critical patient data in the field when removed from traditional clinical applications and locations. While smartphones have revolutionized the ease by which we communicate in a healthcare setting, they have increased the challenges and risks to maintaining the security of Protected Health Information (PHI) and with meeting complex regulatory requirements. From an IT perspective, CAST enables secure, compliant messaging without placing additional burden or resource requirements on the IT staff and communications infrastructure.  Follow Critical Alert Systems on LinkedIn, Twitter, and YouTube.

In addition to text messages, CAST can securely send and receive images, video, and even voice memos.  Pages can be directed to a user’s smartphone or tablet, reducing the need to carry an extra communications device or respond to unnecessary clinical interruptions.

Key CAST features:

  • Security: Transport Layer Security (TLS) and 256-bit encryption.
  • Administration: Settings for message expiration, logging, audit trails, Inactivity Logout.
  • Unavailable/Do Not Disturb/Off Duty: Mobile Users can change availability status.
  • HIPAA-Compliant Hosting: Secure data centers: SOC 2, PCI DSS, Safe Harbor, HIPAA.
  • Cellular & Wi-Fi Networks: Message delivered regardless of user’s location.

Additional features include:

  • Remote wipe;
  • Pin lock;
  • Message read receipts;
  • Robust audit trail;
  • SMS and email backup alerts;
  • Priority tones for texts and pages;
  • Desktop client;
  • Separate inboxes for texts and pages; and
  • The ability to maintain current pager number.

CAST is easily deployed as a cloud-enabled application where administrative access, control, and patient data is maintained in a secure, HIPAA-compliant data center owned and operated by Online Tech, one of the industry’s most trusted and experienced hosting providers.