The Home Health Care Agency has resolved a proposal backing a capital expenditure for an electronic medical record is necessary. The cost of the iPatientCare HER by iPatientCare will be annual Software license $1600, implementation costs $3400, cost of support $1500, and hardware cost will be $6600. This will make the total initial cost of implementing the software $13,100. Subsequent costs will be Software license that will be incurred annually, $1,600, cost of support to be incurred annually, $ 1,500 and hardware cost to be incurred every 3 years, $6,600 (Wang, 2013).
This cost will include training and all maintenance costs. This proposal describes how the agency’s management supports the vision of purchasing the iPatientCare HER software and how the software’s implementation will advance the organizational goals of fostering a healthy economic environment.
An electronic medical record system is a system thatcontains all the medical and clinical information relating to a facility’s patients in one collective place. Electronic health records do more than collecting data to containing all-inclusive patient history (Ruther & Helbing, 1988). When used effectively, electronic medical record systems can potentially provide extensive benefits to the entire organization and its stakeholders including the physicians, the patients and other external sources that the facility associates with.
Electronic medical record systems can simplify workflow and increase the quality of care provided to patients and enhance patient safety(Wang, 2013). According to the Institute of Medicine, the incorporation of information technology into health care is one of the key ways to advance health care quality (Institute of Medicine Committee, 2011). Due to these benefits, the Home Health Care Agencythat I work for is considering implementing the outpatient electronic medical records. The software under consideration is the iPatientCare HER by iPatientCare. The main objective of this report is to determine the necessity and costs of adding electronic medical record software to the Home Health Care Agency. This report will reveal the software’s financial benefits as well as operating costs reduction benefits.
The Home Health Care Agency is an organization that offers health care to patients in their homes. The agency in question provides both medical and non- medical services for adult patients in their places of residence.The agency is accredited to offer specialized home care and private nursing. The services offered by the agency are divided into two broad categories, skilled nursing and therapeutic services, includingpediatric nursing, chronic illnesses care, orthopedic disorder care, genetic disorder care, monitoring vitals, infections control, physical therapy, and pediatric therapy.
Over the years, the agency facilityhas been performing soundly financially but it has been incurring high labor costs and low revenue due to low productivity, which is associated with inefficient record keeping system that is currently in use. Implementing electronic medical record is expected to counter some of the expenses and improve quality of health care provided by the agency. An electronic medical record system will be more beneficial than the current paper records system. It will facilitate long-term data tracking; help care providers recognize the patients who are due for preventive appointments; help monitor patient’s parameters such as blood pressure readings; and improve the quality of care provided.
One of the main goals of the agency is to become the leading home healthcare provider in the area by providing high quality services at reasonable costs to its patients. Being a modern health facility, agencymain source of income is the fee paid by patients for services provided onsite. Consequently, delays caused by a poor record keeping and sharing system causes low productivity coupled by loss of existing customers and reduced referrals owing to reduced patient confidence and patient satisfaction affects the agency’s financial position adversely.
The agency employs 2 doctors, 8 registered nurses, and 13 care assistants. The agency offers care 16 hours a day and there are two registered nurses on call 24 hours a day, every day of the week. Each care provider is expected to visit around 8 to 10patients a daydepending on the nature of the procedures beingperformed. Introducing a more effective record keeping and information sharing system will help the agency serve its patients without delays hence reducing the average time spent onsite while increasing customer satisfaction at the same time.
With the current system, sharing information within the stakeholders is challenging. Patient’s medical information requires to be shared between the agency’s health care providers, the patients, and with external stakeholders. In some occasions, the patient’s health records even require to be printed and dispensed to external specialists via fax or mail. This is not only time consuming but also increases expenses. All the stakeholders can access information stored in electronic medical record without need for paper transfer. This also means that patients can access their health records whenever they wish and thus improving convenience.
Reducing the time each nurse spends onsite will increase the overall number of patients served while boosting customer satisfaction and increasing referrals, all these will increase revenue. Electronic medical record gives patients access to the information relating to their health thus allowing patient to participate in his or her health care. When patients can participate in their care, it improves the quality of the care outcome significantly. Sharing health information with the patient in a manner that the patients can relate to it will also improve communication between the agent and its patients and there is likely to be an increased engagement rate. This would improve patient’s trust, quality of services provided and patient satisfaction.Additionally, the electronic medical record will reduce the errors made, reduce expenses associated with record keeping and improve efficiency and thus reducing expenses (Rector, Nowlan & Kay, 1991).
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