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A new secure smartphone app may replace the iconic doctor pager

A smart-phone app that lets physicians message each other securely has been developed at Western University. Dr. Brian Rotenberg, associate professor in the Department of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery at Western’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry is one of the driving forces behind PageMe.

Rotenberg joined forces with partners, Francis Yanga and Andre Ross, to form a company called Citruvio Communications Inc., in order to find technological solutions to address these privacy issues.

PageMe is Citruvio’s first product to launch to the public. PageMe has several layers of security, including encrypted transmission of messages to a secure server, password protection, and a self-destruct feature that deletes and erases messages from the device and the server after a 12-hour time period. The app displays a warning sign when users attempt to take a screenshot and doesn’t save photos or videos to the phone’s camera roll. Only those who have been accepted into an individual’s network can send and receive messages.

“The difference between PageMe and other texting apps is that we’ve implemented layers of security,” said Yanga. “We went through several case scenarios that we thought may cause a breach, and developed ways to address them.”

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This promises to be a very exciting innovation and fills a desperately felt need within the field of medicine. Physicians want to text and patients need that information to be absolutely held secure. The layers of security, if coupled with a user-friendly interface, promises to give needed privacy and confidentiality to physician messaging, while preserving flexibility with point-of-care discussion and collaboration.