If your organization is considering a move to cloud faxing, the story of UAB Medicine—which operates the third-largest public hospital in the US—might prove to be a helpful guide in your thinking and planning, for two reasons.
First, The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s health system is among the most respected and successful in the country. UAB Medicine has been on the Becker’s Hospital Review list of “100 Great Hospitals in America” every year since 2013. They have also won numerous awards including Best Cardiac Care, Best Family Eye Care, Best Hospital NICU, Outstanding Patient Experience, and Health Care’s Most Wired.
In other words, UAB Medicine doesn’t make any decision—including upgrades to their technology infrastructure—without carefully considering how it will affect operations, costs, and patient care.
And there’s a second reason your organization could benefit from hearing the story of UAB Medicine’s transition from fax machines to a cloud-fax environment. Whatever challenges are prompting your team to find a better way to transmit documents than paper faxing—costs, productivity, HIPAA—the chances are UAB Medicine was facing those same problems.
UAB Medicine’s Many Challenges (and Maybe Yours as Well) with Fax Machines
As a provider that receives hundreds of paper faxes every day, 24/7/365, UAB Medicine found their fax-machine environment creating many operational problems, including:
- The need to manually sort and distribute hardcopy faxes to physicians’ offices each day.
- The need to scan all of these faxes, enter them into the EHR, and then take the paper to a shredding machine. Webinar Poll Question:
“What’s your biggest concern about fax use
today in your organization? Top response (65%):
Less-effective patient care:
- This manual process of converting requests for refills, lab results, and other fax documents into messages for the appropriate doctor meant slower response times and a poorer patient experience. Webinar Poll Question:
“What fax feature is most important
today for your business operations? Top response (75%):
The ability to route it to the intended recipient.
- UAB Medicine believed it was overspending to maintain this inefficient infrastructure of fax machines—which required dozens of dedicated fax lines, hours of staff labor every day, and a constant resupply of paper and toner cartridges.
Security and compliance issues:
- Paper fax documents left sitting on fax machines—often overnight—created security vulnerabilities.
- The chances of the wrong person picking up or viewing an inbound paper fax containing ePHI left UAB Medicine at risk of HIPAA noncompliance.
As one of the most sought-after medical facilities in the Southeastern United States, with a reputation for excellence, UAB Medicine decided the operational problems caused by their fax machines were no longer acceptable.
So what did they do?
The Solution That Paid Off Significantly: UAB Medicine’s Move to Cloud Faxing
Thalia Baker, FACMPE, UAB Medicine’s associate vice president, walks you through the steps her team planned and executed to find the right cloud fax solution. You’ll see, for example, how they:
- Found the ideal group within the organization to run a cloud-fax test pilot.
- Created a team of stakeholders to define the pilot program’s goals and success metrics.
- Implemented the pilot and then analyzed its ROI (in cost savings and process improvements).
- Delivered the results (which showed a significant ROI) to the executive team to earn approval for an organization-wide migration.
- Researched the industry, vetted several cloud-fax vendors, and chose the right solution for UAB Medicine.
And how they ultimately…
- Rolled out cloud faxing across their entire organization, including integrating digital fax capability into their EHR.
So, Is Cloud Fax Benefiting UAB Medicine?
Today, UAB Medicine describes it cloud-fax migration as an enormous success for a number of reasons. Here are just a few examples of the ways this new technology is improving their operations, which Baker discusses in detail in the webinar:
- They’ve reduced their fax costs considerably.You’ll see the details in the webinar, but the bottom line is UAB Medicine is saving hundreds of thousands of dollars each year across all of its providers, thanks to the organization’s move to cloud faxing.
- They’ve improved patient care.This was probably the most difficult metric to improve, because UAB Medicine is already recognized for creating a high-quality patient experience.But as Baker explains in the webinar, the fact that all inbound faxes—refill requests, lab results, etc.—are now immediately and automatically routed to the right place means doctors can respond more quickly and the patient experience has become even better.
- Their ePHI management is more secure and compliant.
Now that all of their faxes are received, stored, and distributed digitally, UAB Medicine no longer has the problems of paper containing patient information left sitting on a fax machine, or that need to be physically carried to the right provider and then shredded.
Eliminating all of this handling of PHI documents has made the organization’s processes more secure and in better alignment with HIPAA standards.
Watch the Webinar
See the whole story of UAB Medicine’s move to cloud faxing in our free webinar.
You can even download the training aid that Thalia Baker and her team put together to help UAB Medicine’s staff get up and running quickly and start benefiting from their new cloud-fax solution.
Watch the webinar now.