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Are You SURE You Want to Send That? A Model for Email Professionalism in Medical Education

Railey, Kenyon MD; Tuttle, Brandi MSLIS; Weiss, Jasmine MD

The Journal of Physician Assistant Education: December 2017 - Volume 28 - Issue 4 - p 205–209
doi: 10.1097/JPA.0000000000000165
Special Article

Email is an essential method of communication within academic medical environments and elsewhere. There is a growing body of literature that focuses on provider-to-patient communication in addition to studies examining the intersection of social networking and professionalism. Relatively little research exists, however, regarding the components of professional email interactions or “best practices” for electronic correspondence among colleagues, faculty, and trainees. After reviewing the existing literature, the authors created a practical approach for skillful email construction; the SURE model proposes a simplified framework that teaching institutions can use to improve interdisciplinary interactions and enhance email professionalism.

Kenyon Railey, MD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Community and Family Medicine at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina.

Brandi Tuttle, MSLIS, is a research and education librarian at Duke University Medical Center in Durham, North Carolina.

Jasmine Weiss, MD, is a medical resident at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia.

Correspondence should be addressed to: Kenyon Railey, MD, Department of Community and Family Medicine, DUMC 104780, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 27710. Telephone: (919) 681-8926; Email:

The authors declare no conflict of interest.

Copyright © 2017 Physician Assistant Education Association
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