Healthcare / Medical
Rockland Eye, a general ophthalmology practice in New York, has administered cataract, Lasik and other eye care procedures since the 1960s. Rockland Eye employs five ophthalmologists and twenty other staff members between two locations in Garnerville and Bardonia. Managing patient information between these two locations was complicated.
Medical records were floating between two offices, getting passed around and not always being returned to their proper home. Whether they were left on desks or outside of the office, staff was spending two hours every day searching for records, five of which were misplaced per day on average. For those that weren’t found, misplaced records were often difficult or impossible to replace. A transition to electronic medical records (EMR) also loomed.
With the switch to EMR, the burning question of what to do with their paper medical records and frustration with misplaced and lost documents led Rockland Eye to consider implementing enterprise content management (ECM). It was up to the practice administrator, Keith Froleiks, to select and implement an ECM system. “When I saw four people scrambling around for something, I wanted to pull my hair out,” Froleiks laughed.
Rockland Eye sought an ECM solution that would not only simplify their records management process, but one that would integrate with its new EMR system, NextGen®. Froleiks was concerned that the document management capability of the ECM system would be difficult to use. Froleiks also wanted to utilize a local document service provider to scan documents into an electronic format with fast access to the paper files in case they were needed during the conversion process. It was also important for Rockland Eye to access scanned images of patient charts and records in a way that integrated with their new EMR system.
These requirements led him to Digiscribe, who scanned all of the practice’s documents in three months, finishing just two weeks before the EMR system went live. Froleiks chose PaperVision® Enterprise from Digitech Systems because this full-featured document management solution was a better value than other options and, with professional services from Digiscribe, integrated with NextGen. Digiscribe performed the implementation and Rockland Eye launched its EMR system and PaperVision Enterprise simultaneously in 2011.
With Digiscribe’s solution, Rockland Eye employees can put the focus back where it belongs, on patient care. Today, all paper charts are efficiently organized: once scanned, doctors simply enter the medical record number, hit a button and the chart loads immediately. Previously, staff members spent two hours per day searching for records. If they struggled to locate the record of choice, the doctor often stepped in and helped. “It slowed down the entire office,” Froleiks noted. With PaperVision, the practice now recoups $20,000 each year in lost staff productivity.
Now documents have a designated home and staff finds records instantly. Seven employees used to man the front desks and look for charts. Froleiks has since implemented a call center and his employees are spending more of their time helping patients and taking calls rather than digging through file cabinets, desks and vehicles for records. Froleiks is also thrilled with the reallocated space now that paper documents have been reduced. The Garnerville office turned a 7′ x 10′ space used for filing cabinets into an office for the practice administrator.
For any organization, losing documents is a problem. For a medical practice, keeping track of patient records is vital. PaperVision allows Rockland Eye to confidently know where every document resides and the worry of losing them has diminished. Electronic documentation assures that records will be exactly where they’re supposed to be when needed by doctors and staff. Additionally, with PaperVision, “The files are backed up and there’s less likelihood of a chart being misplaced,” according to Froleiks.
Though a medical practice, Rockland Eye is a business and, like any other, needs to meet its bottom line. Now that documents are scanned and organized in PaperVision, previous storage space was converted into a room for medical equipment, allowing the practice to schedule two extra exams each day. At $150 per exam, Rockland Eye now makes an additional $75,000 in revenue annually.
At the end of the day, Rockland Eye’s main goal is to provide the highest quality of care to its patients. As implemented by Digiscribe, PaperVision Enterprise was an easy-to-use solution that required virtually no training. Now doctors and staff can focus on treating ophthalmology patients instead of spending hours trying to find patient records.
Accessing old paper charts is quick and easy with PaperVision. The information is right at my fingertips from within the NextGen electronic health record and the integration is seamless to me. I can now access old paper charts from offsite. This has proven invaluable when I am on-call after hours or on the weekend.