Benefits of Moving Away From a Paper Based Patient Management System for Aged Care

Asha Neil

Written on 9 January, 2023
Using paper based patient management systems can lead to errors, lost records and HIPAA compliance issues. Additionally, it can be time-consuming for your caregivers and back office team alike.

Fortunately, the move to electronic records is quick, intuitive and offers a wealth of benefits.

What Are the Alternatives to a Paper Based Patient Management System?

Care documentation management is critical for healthcare organizations, who often have reams of medical and health records for each patient. Fortunately, new technology can make patient documentation easier to manage. 

Electronic health records (EHRs) are increasingly favored over paper records. They take up less space and are easy to access and share. EHR adoption can also make compliance easier.

Cloud-based systems are a type of EHR that allow multiple users to securely access the same document, no matter where they are based. This is particularly useful for home health care and in-home aged care services.

Key Benefits of a Cloud-Based Patient Management System

When healthcare providers move to cloud document management storage systems, they’ll benefit from:

Higher Quality of Care

Electronic medical records facilitate better patient care. Unlike paper records, electronic health records allow your team to check a patient’s medical history on the go, and in doing so, make better decisions. 

Not only will your staff be more informed, but you’ll be able to assign more appropriate workers to each client. With online client and caregiver databases, it’s much easier to filter and match them. In turn, this can lead to better patient outcomes and improved patient satisfaction scores.

Better Patient Safety

An improved documentation system leads to a reduced risk of medical errors and better overall patient care and safety.

Paper medical records can contain outdated patient information, which can cause severe issues for medication management. Even when clinical information is up to date, there’s a higher chance of it being read incorrectly due to poor handwriting, smudged ink, coffee stains, or rips and tears. In contrast, electronic records are easier to read and much harder to damage.

Improved Efficiency

Recording, accessing and updating paper records is time-consuming. The more paper-based records you have, the more time your team will need to spend finding the right paperwork. That’s not to mention the printing and storage costs of all this paper.

Digitizing your organization will help you save time and space. In fact, our customers find that patient management software helps them reduce the time spent on some administrative tasks by up to 90%

Not only are electronic databases quick and easy to access, but an electronic healthcare system allows you to create templates for faster data entry. And no matter how small your office space is, there will also be room for more digital files. Plus, it can automate essential patient management tasks such as document expiry alerts. 

Accurate Patient Data and Service Records

Human error is always a risk in data entry. However, an electronic healthcare system makes it easy to accurately record data by allowing a quick cross-reference of key patient details. Compared to using paper files, updating documentation to correct errors is also much simpler.

You can also automatically generate electronic visit records and assign evidence expenses to each shift. You’ll have an accurate legal and medical record suitable for everything from tax audits to incident investigations and health reviews.

Reduced Risk of Lost Records

Whether they’ve been misfiled or were never returned after being accessed, it’s easy to lose paper records. With an electronic record, however, even accidental file deletion can be easily spotted and undone. You’ll have a complete record of client data, along with all file edits.

Instant Sharing of Patient Updates

One of the biggest benefits of cloud-based patient management is improving communication. When your entire team has immediate access to patient data and the latest progress notes, they’ll be on the same page about care plans and patient needs.

Electronic medical records allow you to automate sharing updates with clients’ family members. While doing this with paper records would often require manually drafting emails or sending out documents via snail mail, you can share electronic updates with the click of a button.

Up-to-Date Records

Outdated client data can lead to medical errors and poor care decisions. This is particularly important in aged care, where your clients may be unable to correct staff due to dementia.

Software can help you avoid these issues. Automated document expiry notifications will prompt you to update records as required, so you can ensure your team makes care decisions based on the correct patient information. Plus, an electronic storage system reduces the risk of accidentally accessing older versions of key paperwork. 

HIPAA Compliance

Proper management of patient information is essential for HIPAA compliance and ensuring patient privacy. An electronic system facilitates this. With secure cloud storage and password-protected access, it will help you avoid common HIPAA violations. What’s more, you won’t have to spend any extra time on compliance.

Patient Management Software for Seamless Operations

With an electronic health record system, your aged care organization will be able to operate more efficiently. You’ll reduce the time spent on administrative tasks, such as onboarding clients and updating their records.

Efficiency isn’t the only benefit of an online patient management system, however. You’ll also optimize communication across your whole team and ensure HIPAA compliance. Sharing progress updates with clients and their loved ones will be easy.

Perhaps most importantly, your staff will be empowered to improve care quality and patient outcomes, because they’ll have the information they need at hand. 

ShiftCare’s care management software has a robust cloud-based document management system that will keep you HIPAA compliant. Caregivers can securely access client medical records and add progress notes on the go. Plus, it comes with a wide range of other patient management features, including client-caregiver matching, scheduling and client communications.

You can set up ShiftCare in minutes, so try it for free today.

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