Find-It Brings Optical Character Recognition to MEDITECH’s SCA at Yampa Valley Medical Center
Located in a popular ski town in Northwest Colorado, Yampa Valley Medical Center relies on the MEDITECH Client/Server HCIS to provide quality care to the area’s residents and visitors. When evaluating scanning and archiving (SCA) solutions several years ago, management identified a need for optical character recognition (OCR) for full-text searching of scanned documents. This was a key function behind the medical center’s purchase of CareTech’s iDoc; however, it lacked true integration with MEDITECH and some of their desired search functionality. Yampa Valley Medical Center (YVMC) decided to transition to MEDITECH’s SCA after learning about Forward Advantage’s Find-It, an OCR solution designed in collaboration with MEDITECH.
Integrated with MEDITECH, Find-It allows end users to perform advanced, content-based searches on scanned business office documents, including both legacy and new images. Not only does Find-It provide the medical center with its desired search functionality, but the integration with MEDITECH’s SCA has led to a more streamlined workflow for staff. “In healthcare today, we are asked to do more with less, so we have to take advantage of any opportunity to do things more efficiently,” says Mike Nelson, Senior Revenue Cycle Director at YVMC. “Find-It allows us to do some of our business office processes just a little bit faster, so we can push claims through the process as quickly as possible.”
Migrate Scanned Archives with Forward Advantage
As a small, 39-bed facility with limited resources, YVMC relied on Forward Advantage’s Document Imaging and Scanning Conversion team to migrate all of its historical scanned archives from iDoc to MEDITECH. All images were successfully converted, and the medical center was extremely pleased with the timeline. “We are always strapped for resources, so we needed to find that expert out there who had done these conversions before,” says Nelson. “We checked with a couple of different vendors, and Forward Advantage was definitely the most experienced with MEDITECH conversions.” Nelson also points out that Forward Advantage allowed YVMC to come up with workarounds specific to iDoc. “We ran into a couple of unique issues because of the way we did things with iDoc, and Forward Advantage helped us come up with creative solutions to get the information we needed.”
Get the details on this OCR-enabled document search tool for MEDITECH’s Business Office SCA.
An Integrated Solution Streamlines Workflow
YVMC’s primary motivation for switching to MEDITECH’s SCA and Find-It was to take advantage of the added efficiencies that only an integrated solution can offer. “iDoc had the OCR functionality we required, but it was a very paper-based process,” says Nelson. “Some interfaces were built over the years, but the integration piece was still missing. We wanted to switch to MEDITECH, because the integration is seamless with information flowing over.” The same can be said of Find-It, as its background job continuously monitors MEDITECH’s activity. New images are automatically converted into a searchable, text-based format and stored in a SQL database for future querying. To perform a search, end users have the convenience of launching Find-It directly within MEDITECH. However, it is important to note that it runs as a separate application to prevent any impact on performance.
Easy to Use with Minimal Training
There are currently 25 staff members at YVMC who use Find-It, primarily for business office documents like EOBs and financial applications. Users caught onto the system so easily that one, half-day training session is all that was required. The implementation was such a success that Nelson would like to eventually deploy Find-It in other areas of the hospital, including Human Resources, Accounting, and Materials Management. “All areas of the hospital have competing projects right now, but I would love to eventually roll the solution out to other departments so they can scan things like invoices and resumes.”
Save Time with More Advanced Search Functionality
When compared to YVMC’s prior system, Find-It’s detailed search functionality has been a huge benefit to the end users at Yampa Valley. “We were so limited with how we could search for things,” says Melonie Juel, Outpatient Clinic Coordinator at YVMC. “We can find things easier and faster now versus going through page-by-page with our old system. For instance, we can search the dollar amount of a check, or we can search by a scan date or deposit date.” According to Juel, she and the other users are also saving valuable time with the ability to black out a patient’s private information before sending an EOB to an insurance company. “We used to have to manually cut and paste the information we needed from an EOB to send it off with a claim. Find-It lets us redact any HIPAA-related information that shouldn’t go to an insurance company. It’s saving us a lot of extra time.”
About Yampa Valley Medical Center
Yampa Valley Medical Center is a non-profit, non-tax-supported regional medical center serving the five-county area of northwest
Colorado and a portion of Wyoming. YVMC is an accredited, full-service acute care hospital with 39 beds. As a regional medical center,
YVMC provides emergency care, surgical services, cancer care, comprehensive therapy and rehabilitation services, along with care from The Family Birth Place and Special Care Nursery. YVMC serves 51,000 outpatients annually.