Factors Affecting The Health Care Market

Factors Affecting the Health Care Market By: Steve Hebel

Anyone that has ever been in a doctor’s office or hospital can plainly see that it is a very paper intensive environment as well as a very labor intensive environment from a document prospective.  Listed are some current issues pertaining to heath care records management.

1)      Currently 31 cents of every dollar in health care is spent on administrative costs.

2)      It is easy to lose or misplace paper files; it’s estimated that doctors see patients with incomplete data 40% of the time

3)      It is tremendously time consuming to maintain paper documents

4)      Currently over 90% of patient data is still stored on paper

Big changes are on the horizon throughout the medical field.  Changes that will affect everyone from hospitals to pharmacies to dentists to Insurance providers and everyone in between.

Currently the health care industry is regulated by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA).  This act states that patients have the right to their files for up to 6 years along with this they also have the right to know who has had access to their records and why they looked at the records.

In addition to this former Senator Edward Kennedy has introduced a new law which is being referred to as the Health Care Quality Modernization, Cost Reduction and Quality Improvement Act.   If this law is approved it will require all U.S patient records to be kept in an electronic format and this will have to be accomplished by December 31, 2010. Time is running out as we speak.

So, you think it’s just a copier or just a printer?

The copier and printer industry has implemented very specific devices and software programs,which are designed for use in the health care sector.  Here is a list of what these machines are currently being used for:

1)      Data Storage by leveraging the internet

2)      Fast access to records, retrieval and distribution of patient information

3)      Control and track patient privacy

4)      To produce accurate audit trails

5)       To help accelerate the business process

Return on investment? Yes, please!

1)      Cut cost on printing and copying by going paperless

2)      Reduce physical storage space and cost

3)      Reduce staff requirements or have better appropriation of time and assets

4)      Comply with green initiatives

With the use of proper technology in your printing and copying environment you would be able to manage patient information effectively, ensure privacy as well as physical protection of records.

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