top of page

Catawba Valley Health System implements Communication Director and shares tips for success

Mar 18, 2022

Multi-solution strategy streamlines care and saves time, paper, and money

Catawba Valley Health System (CVHS) is the largest not-for-profit, community hospital in its region. A recipient of numerous awards, including North Carolina’s first and only 5-time Magnet recipient for nursing excellence, CVHS has relied on Forward Advantage for integrated solutions with its MEDITECH EHR for nearly two decades. CVHS implemented Communication Director for on-demand faxing and report distribution in 2003 and has since deployed several other services and solutions, including:

Forward Advantage is thankful for the opportunity to reconnect with this valued customer to explore how Communication Director has evolved at CVHS and how our solutions help meet organizational objectives for this award-winning site.

Catawba Valley insights

with Kim Patrick, IT manager

Q: Describe CVHS’s relationship with Forward Advantage.

CVHS has an excellent relationship with Forward Advantage. I have many avenues of communication including the support line, regional sales representative, and directors. I have personally met many Forward Advantage team members and feel I have a great working relationship with each of them. Forward Advantage has provided CVHS with a variety of solutions and has been flexible in fine tuning these according to our needs. We have also worked with Forward Advantage to test new solutions to improve their offerings for all customers.

Q: Describe the organizational benefits that Forward Advantage solutions provide.

We have many Forward Advantage products, including: Communication Director, RapidFiler, Bed Stat and Find-It. Communication Director provides a vital role at CVHS. This solution automates faxing to our providers for the seamless transition of care. We also use DesktopFax in several areas for on-demand faxing out of MEDITECH. Bed Stat is vital to the organization as well by keeping the MEDITECH Bed Board bed status current. We use MEDITECH’s Bed Board for placing patients in beds and have eliminated many phone calls with a more streamlined admission process.

Our Business Services department uses Find-it to locate scanned documents that would otherwise be extremely difficult to find. We just finished implementing the first phase of RapidFiler and are looking forward to leaner workflows in our Health Information Management department.

Q: How is Communication Director set up at CVHS?

We have inbound and outbound faxing. We also use File Copy and SMTP Email. We use DesktopFax and SmartRoutes for automated faxing. DesktopFax cuts paper usage and eliminates the need for a fax machine. We have four SmartRoutes in use. We use one of the SmartRoutes to create alerts from orders. We send a patient order to a virtual printer, and the printer sends the order to a SmartRoute. The SmartRoute then converts the order to an email on a mobile device that our clinicians can monitor as they are on the move. This eliminates the need to log into MEDITECH or wait for paper requisitions. It is very beneficial for employees who are on the move but need to know what their next order is. We also use a SmartRoute to send purchase orders through MEDITECH to our vendors. This saves valuable time for our Supply Chain department.

Q: What are some additional benefits of Communication Director?

We have eliminated paper faxing in several areas in the hospital by using Inbound Faxing and File Copy to network folders. Referrals are received much faster and we’re wasting less paper and time.

Q: How has the System Activity Monitor has been useful?

The System Activity Monitor is useful when investigating complaints of providers not getting results. We can find exactly when the results were sent and to which fax number. It is also useful for monitoring and resolving “unknown” fax recipients as well as failed faxes.

Q: Are there any unique challenges at your site that Communication Director addresses?

Providers from other facilities used to have to log in to retrieve AS-OBGYN superbills, but now these are auto-faxed to them. Inbound faxing with File Copy benefits the entire hospital by getting data into MEDITECH faster.

Q: Has CVHS documented ROI from any of our solutions?

A couple of years ago, CVHS approached Forward Advantage with a problem regarding legacy data. Forward Advantage worked with us to get that data out of the legacy system and into MEDITECH. It was a long process, but the team at Forward Advantage was excellent. We successfully migrated many years of legal medical records into MEDITECH and used the Historical Archive Viewer while we were in transition from the legacy system. Due to the successful migration of our legal records from the legacy system, we are currently saving over $14,000 per month in support fees from the legacy vendor.

We have also documented lean processes due to our MEDITECH Bed Board implementation. We have better patient flow from our Emergency Department to inpatient beds and have reduced phone calls to our staff. We couldn’t use the Bed Board if it wasn’t being updated by Forward Advantage’s Bed Stat.


Interested in learning more about Communication Director and what it can do for your organization?

Related resources

bottom of page