The medical field has become quite competitive in recent years. Patients have access to more providers than ever before. With the growing number of hospitals being founded, the demand for data entry services is growing at an exponential rate.
Data is, and will always be, a primary concern for the medical field. The problem that many providers are running into is that their paper records have become obsolete. This means that they need data entry services to help transition their records into electronic format. Outsourcing these tedious tasks saves a lot of valuable time and frees up internal resources to help combat the ever-growing need for medical care. In short, we’re at the peak of a huge transformation phase where the quality of healthcare continues to be a paramount concern, but the older mindset of using hand-written records is lowering that quality of care.
This transition means that millions of records must be put into electronic format. Even so, there is still a resistance to this conversion since some traditional providers believe that the cost of transforming these records is not valuable enough to justify. This post is going to discuss some benefits of having data entry outsourced.
Patient Care is Faster with Electronic Records
One of the biggest time constraints when using older records is that it takes a long time to dig up older medical records for patients. Several calls must be made to different institutions. Files then must be faxed. Then doctors have trouble reading the handwriting, and so they must call in order to verify certain information. This leads to a game of phone tag while you sit there waiting to get the proper care. Electronic records eliminate this problem because professionals can pull up records in just a few clicks and administer treatments almost immediately. Medical professionals must make evidence-based decisions regarding diagnosis and treatment, so they are dependent on records. The fact is that patients suffer from these long wait times since they must wait longer for treatments that could potentially be administered the same day.
Higher Quality Care
Electronic records provide clinics with the ability to deliver higher quality healthcare. Written records always run the risk of misdiagnosis due to issues like:
- Poor legibility
- Lack of record access
- Lack of information
For instance, if a physician receives a record that has not been updated with a medical test, they might perform the same test on the patient. Electronic records are updated almost instantly, so there is a significantly lower risk of this being an issue. That’s just one of the hundreds of risks with using written records. Older providers are encouraged (sometimes regulated) to use data entry services to update their systems into electronic format for this very reason.
Electronic Records are Easier to Manage
The fact that many jurisdictions are starting to force healthcare providers to use electronic records shows us that they are much more efficient. But let’s put that aside for now and look at it from the public perspective.
Most adults believe that electronic records are more accurate and that they reduce the risk of errors in diagnosis. The reason behind this belief is that electronic records are so much easier to manage. Rather than having to update a patient’s records manually after every visit, systems are now in place that allows those records to be updated in real-time.
Of course, all written records will need to be updated into digital format by using data entry services.
Retrieving Physical Records Takes Too Long
I touched on this earlier, but having to retrieve records manually can take days, even weeks. But digital records can be accessed in real-time, allowing physicians to administer treatments more quickly.
It also saves the staff valuable time. Having the capacity to submit claims and interface with billing plans electronically frees them up focus on their patients’ needs.
Another valuable reason to make the switch from paper to electronic is that health records are more secure in electronic format. Many people believe the opposite to be true but that’s far from the case. Electronic systems provide better control over who can access records so there is actually less risk of these records being stolen. Here are a few reasons why electronic records are more secure:
- Only authorized users can access records. These users undergo extensive background checks.
- Records are encrypted using the latest technology. These records cannot be viewed without a key.
- Paper records are susceptible to tampering.
- Any changes to electronic records can be tracked using audit trails.
- Paper records are subject to natural disasters like fires. Electronic records are stored in digital format and backed up regularly.
Paper Documents are Taking up Too Much Space
Paper records eat up a lot of space. Providers are required to keep at least six years’ worth of records for patients. Several rooms are filled to the brim with countless records, creating clutter. When these records are transformed into digital format, all of that space is freed up for more important uses. Not to mention the time that’s saved when having to pull records.
Think about it for a moment. You can quickly search through digital records by just typing in the patient’s name. That only takes a moment. Imagine having to filter through six years’ worth of clutter to find a record. No wonder health care providers were notorious for their lack of organization in the past.
Specialists Have Instant Access to Digital Records
Finally, specialists can access digital records instantly. This provides them with the ability to diagnose and treat their patients quickly. These records can even be integrated with new records almost seamlessly. Paper records were notoriously difficult to integrate, so it took much longer for specialists to treat their patients.
The bottom line is hospitals that are still using paper records are at a huge disadvantage. Patients are going to choose physicians who can treat them quickly. So, if you are still struggling with paper records, consider having them transcribed into digital format by utilizing data entry services.