Guest blog by David Voss
It is, oftentimes, what you don’t know that hurts the most…..
In my role, I am given the opportunity to act as a consultant to many healthcare facilities and systems; both big and small. Last week, I was given a tour of a local healthcare facility that prides itself on innovation and being ahead of the technology curve. They have invested millions in systems, applications, and processes to enhance patient outcomes and the patient experience throughout the continuum of care.
At the end of the tour, I admitted to them that while everything was extremely impressive, there was still a flaw in their EMR strategy that was creating hidden holes in their medical record. The culprit, in this case, is a common threat in the form of disparate, forgotten, secretly hidden, and hoarded information at every nursing station and office.
The downside of central scanning models
Traditionally, health systems bring on a team of scanning employees who work in a department called Central Scanning. All of the paper across the health system is eventually picked up and/or couriered to the Central Scanning department to be prepared, organized and scanned. This often includes multiple hospitals, remote physician group locations, and remote ambulatory or surgical clinics. In a large hospital, gathering the paper from multiple floors and multiple departments is cumbersome and time-consuming.
Although it varies from system to system, many Central Scanning departments set the expectation that information may take up to 7 days to be available. This often creates mistrust in the provider’s minds and leads them to secretly store the information in filing cabinets, binders, and even drawers at the nursing station instead of sending it off for scanning. Too often, that hidden information is lost, discarded, or forgotten; never to be scanned and creating a domino effect of potential negative consequences.
These challenges impede providers, who lack the most up-to-date information in the system, from providing quality care as it can take days, weeks or months to finally be added to the system.
So how do you fix this?
By configuring your copy machine with a solution that runs through customized workflows you set up, you can automate the scanning process in no time.
Here’s an example of workflow. Although every solution is customized, the basic process is typically the same.
- Have your vendor install proprietary software onto each desired scanning device (any networked copy machine or multi-function device).
- The paper is scanned into an electronic image format using any scan capable device.
- The scanned image is sent securely and electronically to your vendor
- At our facility specifically, the image is processed, indexed, OCR’ed, and QA is performed by our proprietary patented software and trained professionals.
- The finished digital information is securely and directly returned, in the desired format, electronically into the customers desired repository or database for immediate retrieval and viewing.
Hidden holes and missing information can be detrimental to your organization’s ability to deliver on the outcomes and metrics required. Eliminate them today with the right solution that fits your organization.
David Voss is a Healthcare Specialist with DataBank IMX in the Healthcare Solutions division. He has been instrumental in the design and implementation of various IT Infrastructures, Information Management, and Document Management solutions varying from small family practices to national health systems.
David Voss, MBA | (480) 335-8560 | DVoss@DataBankIMX.com | Twitter: @HC_Challenges