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How integrating cloud faxing into an EMR system yields positive impacts on patient care

Michael Flavin | Apr 10, 2015

EMR vendors and integrators are helping customers realize improved patient care with cloud-based faxing integration into EMRs.

Many healthcare professionals have gone digital – implementing EMR (Electronic Medical Record) systems, enabling immediate access to patient records, medications, and practice management info – all at their fingertips. For instance, many of us have seen physicians utilize iPads to decouple themselves from workstations and communicate in near real-time with remote staff about time-sensitive patient decisions – creating greater efficiencies in workflows. 

However, there is a perception by many patients that even with new EMR technology that some providers are reluctant to commit to follow-on IT initiatives to improve the patient experience. According to a recent report from Technology Advice, more than 37% of patients reported that their physicians don’t offer any of six key technologies examined, including online appointment scheduling, online test results and follow up messages. This is in stark contrast to statistics from the same report showing 61% of patients considered digital health services as very important in choosing a healthcare provider.   

Certainly, post-EMR integration and Meaningful Use fatigue may be part of the culprit, but it may also be that providers, hospitals and payers alike, view IT initiatives to introduce new technology as time consuming and costly, even though they are generally on board with new ‘Tech’ – as long as it make sense. 

One technology that providers are adapting with the help of EMR vendors is cloud faxing. While faxing is not a new technology, it is still recognized as an essential business communication method worldwide – especially in healthcare. New cloud-based fax technology has adapted to embrace the outsourced cloud model (Infrastructure-as-a-Service) yet has the flexibility to integrate into EMR systems – providing improved service, reduced turnaround times and minimal IT overhead – a ‘win-win’ for both patients and providers. Providers also retain the great benefits of traditional fax, such as audit trail, assured delivery, confirmation receipts, but gain with new features such as enhanced security and storage. 

Specific benefits eFax Corporate can provide include:

  • Flexible fax API integration options. EMR vendors and provider IT executives can work with eFax Corporate’s Technical  Support and Partner Support Program managers to ensure a smooth onboarding and testing of the API before deployment
  • Auditing & compliance. Detailed information is available for transaction histories including received, sent, error messages and confirmations – all of which can help with trending reports or audit activities. With available TLS-SMTP options, transmissions of ePHI will be highly secure when sent with eFax Corporate, enhancing compliance.
  • Training. The good news about fax technology today is that it’s email-based, so from a training perspective the implementation is fairly simple – medical staff that can email can fax – securely. Also, no need to train the IT staff on the new ‘fax server’ – it’s all cloud based.
  • Streamlined workflows & process. No more waiting for physical faxes to come in and having to secure an ‘inbound fax’ area to guard against improper disclosure and possible HIPAA violations. Email faxes go directly to the intended recipient – a great boost for compliance! The result is cost and time savings, faster response times, and improved delivery.

To learn more about eFax Corporate’s suite of enterprise fax products, be sure to drop by booth #7756 next week at the HIMSS Show in Chicago, Ill, or visit us online atenterprise.efax.com

 
Michael Flavin

About Michael Flavin

Michael Flavin Former Sr. Product Marketing Manager, Enterprise Marketing at eFax Corporate - a part of j2 Global™
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