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The advantages of technology

Technology is improving medical practice and healthcare services in a number of important ways including:

  • Data analysis

    big data is being collected and analysed to identify trends and work towards treatments (particularly useful in the case of epidemics).
  • Self-diagnosis

    through online searches, patients are becoming more educated about illnesses and symptoms, which can lead them to seek more timely treatment.
  • Electronic medical records

    patient information is being stored in online data banks, where it can be accessed by a variety of medical professionals to better manage a patient’s treatment.
  • Communication

    doctors are better able to communicate with one another via video conferencing to discuss medical issues and to communicate with and diagnose patients living in remote areas.
  • Health wearables

    wearable medical devices that monitor vital signs are being used to manage chronically ill patients and health conscious people are using them to manage their personal fitness and exercise regimes.

Improvements in accuracy

One of the biggest benefits of technology is its ability to improve the level of accuracy in patient information. Unlike the days of scribbled handwritten notes, doctors now type patient records directly into a database where they can be accessed by any authorised person. This is particularly useful in clinics where a patient may not see the same doctor each time they visit.

As well as contributing to a better level of patient care, accurate digital records can also help to protect medical practitioners from erroneous claims of non-compliance, misdiagnoses or malpractice, as a patient’s medical records are the first thing courts examine in such circumstances.

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How you can benefit

A healthcare organisation’s success depends upon timely and accurate flow of patient information and technology can help to make the delivery of health services more efficient through

  • Digital services that provide instant access to a patient’s medical information and help to support early diagnosis and better disease management.
  • Communication technologies that allow medical practitioners to confer on the go and staff to communicate seamlessly via email and messaging services.
  • Administrative software that automates low priority tasks to speed them up and to reduce the degree of human error.

But technology can only do so much if a healthcare organisation is still using inefficient administrative procedures. These need to be addressed first and may include:

  • Poor delegation

    medical practitioners spending too much time on tasks that could easily be performed by less qualified staff.
  • Lack of prioritisation

    bottlenecks resulting from low priority tasks taking precedence over higher priority tasks.
  • Lack of flexibility

    failing to customise processes (i.e. making all appointments the same length, rather than allowing for different patient needs).
  • Lack of outsourcing

    failure to outsource to outside agencies when there is too much work for available staff (i.e. medical transcription services).

Streamlining current administrative procedures and incorporating new technologies will result in considerable cost savings and create more time for medical professionals to spend with their patients.

Accessible documents

Healthcare providers around the world are realising the benefits of making medical documents more accessible including:

  • Increased productivity

    immediate access to information by all stakeholders can dramatically streamline workflows.
  • Greater privacy and security

    as long as the correct precautions are taken (i.e. encryption and regular backups), electronic records cannot be lost, stolen or destroyed.
  • Improved customer service

    electronic records can be easily transferred when a patient changes doctors and can be customised to incorporate appointment and medication reminders, self-care instructions and patient education information.
  • Increased profitability

    freeing up more time through greater efficiencies allows for the treatment of more patients, which equates to more revenue for the practice.

Greater efficiency

So how can you improve efficiency within your medical organisation using the latest technology?

Firstly, look at the way information is shared by your organisation between staff, patients and other healthcare providers and automate low priority procedures wherever possible (i.e. appointment reminders, inventory, ordering etc).

Then, look at the way you schedule appointments and make educated assumptions about the length of time required, or consider introducing online appointments where time is automatically allocated based on information supplied by patients (i.e. age, general health, the reason for visit etc).

Also look at your accounts receivable department and if payment processes are slow and inefficient, invest in software with features such as the integration of concessions and Medicare rebates, in order to speed up the billing process.

Finally, look at your medical transcription procedures. If they are not being completed in a timely manner or are taking up too much staff time that could be better spent on patient care, then consider outsourcing to a medical transcription service such as SyberScribe.

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Is it easy to use more technology?

Once you convert your records from paper to digital, you can then take full advantage of the benefits that technology offers the healthcare sector, but there are a few things to keep in mind when converting paper records into electronic ones. Tips include:

  • Decide the most cost-effective way to do the conversion (i.e. using non-skilled labour, existing staff or by bringing in an outside agency)
  • Decide how much of a patient’s record to scan (i.e. total, partial or just the basic summary page)
  • Be aware that there will be some exceptions where full record scanning will be required (i.e. those records containing special imaging or important documents)
  • Once the conversion is complete, keep the paper records for several years or until such time as they are no longer being referred to.

The advantage of a medical transcription service

Then, once your practice is 100% digital, you can take full advantage of the many services technology has made possible, such as SyberScribe’s state-of-the-art medical transcription service.

Our software packages are intuitive and easy to use and 15 minutes is all it takes to learn the process. You can use a digital recorder and any existing Internet-connected PC to access our hosted dictation and transcription platform and our transcriptionists will then turn your reports around in a timely manner and file them securely back into your management system.

So if you’re ready to make the most of technology in your healthcare organisation, contact SyberScribe to find out more about our services today.

FAQ'S

What are the key advantages of human transcription vs automated audio transcription?

Human transcription makes use of people to transcribe audio and video recordings. Whereas automated audio transcription utilises computer-based, speech recognition software to transcribe audio and video recordings.

As one process utilises humans rather than technology, there are inherent advantages and disadvantages to both forms of transcription. For instance, while automated audio transcription may provide faster turnarounds, human transcription is actually more beneficial, because humans can provide more accurate and therefore reliable reports.

Another key advantage of human transcription is the fact that humans can identify different speakers. However, an audio transcription could interpret a file as numerous voices and only produce a single flow of text.

Medical language and the associated terminologies are complex. Human transcribers are able to recognize and understand context. Ensuring that the correct words are used every time when it comes to describing a patient’s condition. The same cannot be said for automated transcription.

What role does medical transcription play in helping practices / clinics see the value behind electronic medical records?

Electronic medical records (EMR) are the digital version of a paper chart used in a medical practitioner’s office, which are made accessible via a digital platform. EMRs can can a more streamlined patient care process, giving doctors reliable & accurate access to data for everything from check-up reminders to more comprehensive assessments of a patient’s health over time.

Most clinics are overwhelmed with the number of EMR software solutions available in the market. For some, a prudent place to start is with reliable dictation of patient notes, followed by a full transcription to convert this information into text for their records. Many of the reasons why medical transcriptions are convenient and desirable for busy clinics align with that of EMRs - fast access to crucial data, robust security & privacy measures in place to name a few.

With computers and software at the crux of making patient data accessible, clinics without established or suitable digital processes might have to overcome internal challenges before they are able to recognise the benefits of electronic medical records.

A medical transcription is a digital output that, when coupled with the right record-keeping software, offers two very important benefits: a simplified workflow for doctors and a more considered & thorough approach to medical care for patients. Therefore, by actively using medical transcriptions in an existing process, a clinic can begin exploring more long-term EMR solutions and upon realising the benefits specific to how they work, a wider adoption could begin to take place, bringing on new potential for improved customer service.

What does the future of medical transcription look like?

The future for medical transcription is as exciting as ever. While the rise of automated audio transcription has left some wondering about the viability of human transcription, it poses no real threat to the future of human medical transcribers.

Computers and technology may have prompted some of the great advancements in modern history, however they are no substitute for a real life human being. Especially in the medical industry and its associated professions.

A human is much more reliable and more flexible than machines and in the medical industry these traits are paramount. Medical transcriptions, for legal and health reasons, need to be 100% accurate.

There will always be demand for health care and this ensures that medical transcriptionists are here to stay. As long as there is a health care industry, there will be demand for a service that can accurately and reliably convert medical records into hard copy or electronic text.

What our clients say about us

Our Practice required immediate transcription services on a short-term basis. The services provided by SyberScribe were extremely efficient and professional. There were no set up costs or administration fees. The typing accuracy was 100%, and the turnaround time was 24 to 48 hours. I highly recommend SyberScribe to Medical Practices requiring short term or long term transcription services.

Kim Moller – Practice Manager – Dr Enzo Lazzaro, Urologist, Sydney

Contact us to find out more about our medical transcription services.

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Need to outsource your medical transcription and want a service you can trust?

SyberScribe provides a secure, tailored, low-cost outsourced medical transcription service. Exclusive to the Australial Healthcare Industry, SyberScribe provides you with confidence in accuracy, security and timeliness when it comes to medical transcription.

Utilising the latest medical transcription technology for its services, SyberScribe have proven specialist experience in transcribing all types of medical reports for all specialties, with a guaranteed minimum 98% accuracy of transcription. Not only are we committed to quality, our medical transcription service is available all day, every day with a 24-48 hour turnaround time.

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