Consultant and diagnostic referral times cut and paper based documentation removed at dedicated orthopaedic and sports surgery.
Software and consultancy provider, Hicom, announces it is automating consultant and diagnostic referral processes and providing a paperless environment through the design and implementation of purpose-built technology interfaces at Sports Surgery Clinic (SSC), one of the first dedicated orthopaedic and sports surgery clinics in Europe.
Based in Dublin, Ireland, SSC conducts approximately 12,500 surgical referrals a year for treatment for orthopaedic, spinal, sports and exercise related injuries. The clinic has been using Hicom's clinical management solution, Enterprise, which provides end-to-end management of the administrative process within the hospital, for nine years. With the go-live of this new interface, which Hicom has designed to meet SSC’s unique requirements, 25 of the consultants who provide referrals can now export referral data to the admissions department in just one click. The clinic has also gone live with an interface for its diagnostic referrals.
Prior to this development, SSC operated a paper-based process for its referrals, which proved to be labour intensive for both consultants and the admissions team.
The manual tasks that could take the admissions team up to 10-20 minutes to fully complete and check has been made automatic and seamless, and now takes between 3-6 minutes. Additionally, consultants have the option to add multiple attachments to the electronic referral form, when they would previously have had to print and fax the documents.
Margaret English, Business Applications Manager at SSC comments: "With the introduction of the electronic referral system, the data that is now being transferred between our teams is not only super fast but is more accurate and any risk of duplication is removed. We have also been able to set some mandatory fields so consultants cannot send a referral to us without certain data, whereas on the paper based system, we had problems enforcing this."
As a result of referrals now being delivered electronically in real time, SSC has visibility of all patient records at any one time and can book appointments and operations more efficiently, allowing it to better bed forecasting and management.
Aiming for a Joint Commission International (JCI) accreditation in October 2017, SSC will be required to demonstrate that they can chart all patient and referral related documentation for audit purposes. Hicom's interface is helping SSC to streamline their processes and increase the traceability of data in time to ensure that they will be able to adhere with these stringent requirements.
Margaret adds: "This is the first project that I've worked on that is helping both sides of the referral process, and nobody has any additional work to do. We also know that we now have the means and capacity to take on more bookings and admissions by using the additional features Hicom has provided us.
"I have received such positive feedback and the project has changed quite of lot of people’s workflows here, with them being able to move through our processes more quickly."
John Sanderson, Director, Hicom concludes: "We understand that healthcare professionals want to cut down the time they spend on administration and focus the majority of their time on patient care. Through the capabilities that technology can now provide, hospitals can truly deliver integrated care throughout the organisation and all within a paperless environment.
"We believe that it is crucial that any new implementation is able to integrate seamlessly with other clinical and administrative systems, and that all information can be stored in one location, which is what our interfaces are providing to SSC. We are very much looking forward to supporting them as they continue to refine the new process."