Video-conferencing - secure, encrypted, HIPAA compliant
Online Therapy Institute Blog
March 1, 2011

First, let?s discuss Skype. Everyone wants to know- is Skype encrypted?

Yes, Skype is encrypted. But, Skype is not necessarily HIPAA compliant. For U.S. practitioners who need a HIPAA compliant solution (that means the practitioner can engage in a HIPAA Business Associate Agreement with the 3rd party and that 3rd party is also HIPAA compliant) then Skype may not be a viable alternative. One could argue though, that we don?t have a HIPAA Business Associate Agreement with AT&T or Vodafone when we use a landline for audio calls but if you are using video/chat and audio full on with clients as a mental health practitioner in the U.S. just consider the need for the HIPAA Business Associate Agreement.

Here?s what others have said about Skype and HIPAA (from Adventures in Telepsychiatry Blog):
Other video-conferencing platforms that may fit the bill:
The following companies have responded to Online Therapy Institute?s inquiries stating they are encrypted and HIPAA compliant:

Gotomeeting and Gotowebinar

Via3 Corporation
The following organization offers videoconferencing with encryption and HIPAA compliance and carries the OTI Verified seal.
Once you find a secure, encrypted and compliant platform, the next hurdle is overcoming the technology. Videoconferencing is not a state-of-the-art technology yet and some therapists as well as clients find the process disruptive. At the very least, be sure you have a familiarity with the platform you are using and prepare yourself and your client for glitches.

Another related blog post: