Geriatric Center Improves Access to Patient Records with MaxxVault5 Nov, 2012 imageSource
At the Isabella Geriatric Center, MaxxVault is making it easy for doctors and the care team to quickly locate the medical files they need for proper patient care. Laboratory and radiological results are sent electronically and automatically delivered into the secure, HIPAA and HITECH compliant MaxxVault repository and made available from within the Electronic Medical Record (EMR) system. With MaxxVault managing what was once a cumbersome paper file, doctors and nurses now have one easy access point to obtain real-time medical information.
Isabella is a non-profit, non-sectarian organization which has been a pioneer in the care of the elderly since 1875. A 705-bed nursing home, Isabella offers moderately priced senior housing, adult day health care, child day care, home care, short and long-term rehabilitation, and a variety of community programs designed to help older adults remain healthy while living at home.
The medical staff at Isabella uses an Electronic Medical Records (EMR) system to manage their patients’ information. However, radiological and laboratory results were still paper-based and delivered by courier from the laboratory & radiology company. As a consequence, getting the full picture required accessing both the electronic and paper file. While records in the EMR system are available from terminals throughout the facility, paper files were only accessible at one location and by one clinician at a time.
Since direct interfaces from the lab and radiological vendor are not available, the MaxxVault document management system provides the medical staff access to all of the records without leaving the EMR. Providing simultaneous access in a clinician friendly view, MaxxVault has helped bring necessary information closer to the point of care.
Doctors and nurses at Isabella order tests for their patients via the EMR and the results are returned via fax. These faxes are now captured electronically and immediately routed into the MaxxVault document repository. Using Optical Character Recognition (OCR), MaxxVault automatically captures the patient I.D. number which is then used to locate and copy other relevant information to help identify the document from the EMR database.
Once indexed, the document is routed to the patient’s file and an email is sent to the patient’s physician, notifying them immediately when the results are back. To access the lab results, the Isabella doctors need only to click on an order and the results are presented for review and sign off. A clinician also has an opportunity to look at other results or documents linked to a resident’s EMR. The system is designed to allow the whole clinical team to efficiently access results electronically, without having to track down a paper file. Feedback from the nurses and physicians has been universally positive:
“The doctors and nurse practitioners have been very pleased with the increased efficiency that comes with the use of MaxxVault,” said Dr. Emanuel. “Access to physical lab results used to mean waiting for the documents to be delivered. The new solution is much faster and easier to work with.”
But it is not just patient care benefiting. For Gregory Fortin, CIO of Isabella, MaxxVault plays a larger role in helping protect the Center from undue risk. “The MaxxVault system provides greater information security as well as records management to improve documentation and records compliance,” said Mr. Fortin. “Being able to find medical information quickly during an inspection or audit helps surveyors and the clinical teams communicate more effectively and demonstrate continuity of care. That we are also able to eliminate expensive paper files and efficiently back-up patient records to prevent against catastrophic loss is an almost priceless benefit.”
Plans are already underway to leverage MaxxVault in other departments. Expansion plans include transforming the Admissions and Home Care departments. Admissions would like to make readily available admissions documents to facilitate quick decision making during the referral process.
The expectation from the Home Care division is to provide the same integration and document access from their EMR application, while also enabling remote access to the nurses that are providing care in a patient’s home. Although these are the currently identified departments for future expansion, other departments are already requesting access to MaxxVault.
Adopting MaxxVault as the image repository for Isabella’s clinical system has helped them solve operation inefficiencies around the management and access of patient records. From one location, both electronic and traditional paper medical records are united for easy access.
With the tools to manage document workflows and ensure HIPAA/HITECH compliance, MaxxVault is an essential part of a complete Electronic Medical Records system.