A 3-step approach to eliminate healthcare faxes in 2018

“Faxing is the cockroach of American medicine: hated by doctors and medical professionals but able to survive — even thrive — in a hostile environment,” said author Sarah Kliff, as she described in painful detail why faxing in healthcare is such a problem.

We agree. Here are just some of the problems with faxes:

  • Faxes are difficult to read. They are blurry and typically cut off or hide the most important information.
  • Transmitting faxes is time consuming, prone to error and often require a phone call to confirm they arrived.
  • Faxes are not secure, as they often sit in the center of medical offices where personal health information (PHI) can be unintentionally revealed.
  • Faxes are dumb. Virtually no data on the fax is computer readable and therefore a staff member must rekey it into systems, introducing potential accuracy issues.
  • Faxes are expensive, as they often require human intervention to print, feed, confirm, review and enter information.

 3 things we can do

Like cockroaches, faxes are difficult to get rid of, but not impossible. Here are some things we can do right now, especially if you are in Ohio or Kentucky:

     1. Become part of the OnBase Mackinac network

Numerous Ohio Payers, Providers and Post-Acute organizations began adopting OnBase Mackinac starting in September, 2017. Mackinac helps by creating secure electronic workflows between healthcare organizations. These workflows, including medical documentation requests, claims attachments (solicited and unsolicited), appeals, HEDIS, Risk Adjustment and Prior Authorization, eliminate faxes! Organizations send and receive data and documents without complex system integrations.

The pay-as-you-go model is simple, inexpensive and available now.

     2. Opt for the cloud.

We originally developed Mackinac for the thousands of healthcare payers and providers that use OnBase, our enterprise information platform. Then, on January 15, 2018, we released a cloud-based solution that allows non-OnBase healthcare organizations to participate in the Mackinac network and its workflows.

This secure, cloud-based offering can be up and running in hours. It will empower your healthcare organization to put your fax at the curb at remarkable speed.

     3. Enhance EDI efforts

While Mackinac can handle most things that electronic data interchange (EDI) can’t handle today, EDI plays a vital role in an overall solution for eliminating faxing in healthcare. What I am hearing from customers and prospects is that the key challenges with EDI are limited use cases, slow adoption and expensive programming efforts to enhance EDI solutions.

Those are challenges, but EDI can be an effective solution for some high-volume transactions. Especially in conjunction with a solution that securely exchanges information electronically, guarantees delivery and facilitates collaboration.

Getting impatient about eliminating faxes

Urgency and impatience can drive change. The use of fax machines is clearly a problem in healthcare.

When are we all going to stop saying, “It’s just always been that way, we fax stuff”?

2018 can be the year we eliminate fax. But we need you to grow impatient, fast.

1 Response

  1. It is always laborious when asked to handle multiple faxes for one or more recipients. Especially when required to get scalable fonts and colors printed accurately. I happen to read through your blog and found it awesomely interesting. I have also similar thought on eliminating faxes using either Network or Cloud Services. I would also like to suggest that one can delete the repeated fax machines that are connected to Home Network and then halt receiving multiple faxes. Nevertheless email faxes also works exceptionally well and does certainly breaks down the redundancy.

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