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Document Management

Streamlining operations for healthcare reporting

By automating manual processes with content transformation, healthcare facilities are better able to apply resources towards their ROI.

T

oday, many healthcare organizations suffer from poor document transformation practices and spend unnec- essary time manually handling physical documents to compile reports. However, there is a proven way to get control of this tedious process. The key is to make sure that the document conversion and publishing process is completed automatically, accurately and seamlessly. This enables healthcare facilities to compile a high volume of information from multiple sources and create production-ready documentation that can be effortlessly used in fi nal reports.

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Typically, these document compilation and publishing pro- cesses employ manual effort by people hired (and better suited)

to more meaningful work. The proper application of technology – such as enterprise content transformation – can automate these processes, delivering multiple benefi ts including lower operating costs, accelerated processes and reduced risks. These are common marketing claims, so let’s look at a real-world experience.

A better way to manage documents On a monthly basis, a New York City-based healthcare facility produces lengthy reports for its senior executives and board members to review cost-per-patient metrics and other business-related matters. Many documents are in different formats, ranging from Excel to Word to Web-based fi les, and it is not uncommon to have multiple authors submitting reports right up to the deadline. With two weeks of manual labor required to print and prepare these reports into physical binders each month, this hospital real- ized that there must be a better way to manage the thousands of documents and arrange them into a single report. Compiling these lengthy monthly reports was resulting in high administrative costs and lost time that could be better focused on patients. This healthcare facility successfully moved its labor-intensive document operations to an automated process, reducing two weeks of work into less than one day. In doing so, the hospital also reduced the cost and time required to rework physical document compilation due to last-minute editorial changes, a task easily accomplished with their electronic content transfor- mation solution.

18 November 2011 Content transformation for healthcare

Content transformation refers to the software and best practices associated with delivering the right content to the right people or systems at the right time, and in the right format. Standardizing disparate document formats into an accessible format (such as PDF), combing them into a properly organized collection and applying process-specifi c features (such as watermarks), page numbers or security restrictions are all elements of the content transformation process.

As part of a complete solution involving content manage- ment and workfl ow automation, content transformation technology allows healthcare facilities to automate these processes instead of forcing users to perform each function separately using manual steps or desktop tools. Content transformation can be delivered as a service by IT across multiple groups and lines of business, transparently linked to the workfl ows and applications they are already using. In addition, by delivering these capabilities centrally across the organization, IT gains centralized administration and control to reduce overall organizational expenditure while meeting the demands of its users.

Some of the key aspects to consider include: Integration with business systems: Delivering capabilities transparently through the business applications and environ- ments with which the users are familiar helps to ensure rapid adoption and maximum benefi t. Performance expectations: Board meetings and other critical business processes have strict timelines. Ensure that your solution enables IT to meet the performance, uptime and quality expectations of the users. Capabilities required: Find the right balance between an all-in-one solution and building something from the ground up. Look for best-of-breed applications that can be combined to meet your current and future needs. Consider the input and output format requirements. Is there a need for capture/ OCR of image content? Do your users need to merge, stamp and secure content? Finding the right solution is not always easy, so look to your peers or companies with solid reputations for understanding the unique challenges of the healthcare market.

HEALTH MANAGEMENT TECHNOLOGY www.healthmgttech.com

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