Advantages of a Paperless Patient File Management System

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A check list of features needed for a paper-less patient filing system

Advantages of a Paperless Patient File Management System

Are you frustrated when your staff can’t find a patient file folder? Do documents get miss-filed into the wrong file folder? Do you know the proper components of recording a patient visit? Do you wish you had one place to put all the information about a patient’s case? How do you know who is reading your patient files? How do you securely send files to other providers, payers, attorneys? How do you backup all the paper file folders if they may be destroyed in a fire or flood or damaged by vandalism? Do you have a plan to regularly audit your patient records as required by Medicare? Did you know it has been estimated that it costs $8 per file per year folder to keep patient files on your shelves?

If you’ve considered buying a computer system and software to store all patient records and replace your paper file folders here are some features to look for:

1. Does the document management system/patient record system meets HIPAA requirements for restricting who reads patient information. Specifically which types of cases and what type of documents?

2. Does the system meets HIPAA requirements for recording the reader’s names for each file and document?

3. Can you audit what an employee has done on any day? For example, what folders did they open, what documents did they read? Are they productive?

4. Is the system network enabled? Can electronic file folders can be accessed on every workstation – a paper file can only be in one place at a time.

5. Can the system be optionally connected securely to the Internet so files can be opened from remote locations and documents added or read?

6. Can the electronic file folder contain multi-media documents?

7. Can the software smoothly scan and store paper into the database as TIF format and convert the text for content searches?

8. Can the software scan with multiple page support with multi-page scanners or even single page scanners? This helps if the document is many pages or two sided.

9. Is the software able to scan using a camera attached to computer? Great for ID verification of the patient or documenting injury or exam findings. It also can prevent fraud when patients share their benefits with family or friends.

10. Can the system store any electronic file, MS Word, Work Perfect, Images, Photos, Web Sites, Email Messages, Charts, Notes, Phone Messages, Pain drawings, Audio dictation files?

11. Can you search by Folder name, Document name, and contents of scanned documents? Documents that are miss-filed can still be located if you can search inside the text of the document. For example, you could find all the folders and documents by searching scanned text that contains a certain word, such as “sciatica.”

12. Is the system able to locate batches of documents across many folders so they can be selected and picked for printing, zipping for emails, etc.

13. Can all or some of folder documents can be automatically printed or zipped with a password for emailing. If the electronic folder can automatically prints its documents and images it saves time standing at a copier methodically copying each and every side of every page.

14. The system should display images can be viewed as thumbnails for quick location of the desired document.

15. It is helpful if Images can have notes attached to them like a “sticky note”.

16. Can the system allow an Internet Access option available for building a referral network with attorneys, labs, doctors? They can start new file folders, add documents, read restricted documents, view financials, schedule appointments, etc. This greatly speeds up the transfer of information to speed care and settlement of claims.

17. Does the system have a Time clock features for adding up employee hours?

18. Can the software integrate with billing, charting, scheduling modules for a smoothly running system?

19. Does the software have the ability to encrypt patient information in emails for secure emailing of patient information to another provider?

20. Does the software lock documents from being changed or altered? If you leave things on paper they can be lost, altered, etc. This is a liability problem.

For more answers please contact, Dr. Don Lewis,

MLS Solutions Inc 702-837-9291

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Dr. Don Lewis