Chattanooga startup develops HIPAA-compliant text messaging

Technology is changing the way healthcare providers communicate with their patients, but keeping that communication private and secure is key. A Chattanooga-based startup developed a way to make sure that information is private and secure.

Text Request provides software to businesses that allow them to text their customers, including healthcare providers, giving the healthcare industry a way to reach their patients in a way that's never been done before.

Text Request Vice President of Marketing Kenneth Burke explained how healthcare providers can use text messaging to streamline communication with patients.

"If they get a text from their dentist about an appointment reminder, that's a common use case," Burke said.

The service comes as the demand for telehealth increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"We saw through the pandemic that great health care can be provided remotely. And we saw that patients really want to be able to text with their providers, both for their care and things like scheduling, and reminders and payments and ongoing support," he said.

The tool is compliant with rules and regulations set forth by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), something Burke said was the focus during the development stage.

"One is just to make sure that messages are secure and encrypted as they're traveling from our system to carrier partners. Another piece is access, making sure that only the people who need access to that information have access to it," he said.

The tool allows providers to handle scheduling, appointment reminders and payments through text messages. It also allows patients to text with their providers about care.

Text Request is already offering HIPAA-compliant text messaging. Packages range from $50 to 500 per month.

To learn more about Text Request, visit