BOSTON — Mat Waites, chief information officer at The Little Clinic, Kroger Corp.’s retail health clinic subsidiary, has been named winner of Boston Software Systems’ User Excellence Award.
The software firm, which develops workflow automation and integration technology, said Tuesday that Waites was recognized for his successful and innovative use of the Boston WorkStation to automate the registration process and enable patient registration kiosks to interface with the eClinicalWorks EMR.
As a result, The Little Clinic has been able to save the staff hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars, freeing it up to focus more on patient care, according to Boston Software.
The company said Waites and his team developed the The Little Clinic’s patient registration kiosk and needed to interface the patient demographic data into the eClinicalWorks EMR. Boston WorkStation automatically pulls the registration data from the kiosk database and into the EMR, reducing the administrative workload for the staff. The workstation can also identify repeat patients and alert the clinician, further expediting the care process.
Currently, Boston WorkStation serves 20 of the more than 100 clinics, and Boston Software said Waites plans to expand the use of automation to more facilities this year.
"Prior to using the kiosk, the patient was handed the old clipboard and asked to fill out a detailed paper form, which the clinician then had to transfer to the EMR system," explained Waites. "The clinician also had to document the patient queue by hand. As such, the clinician was playing the role of registrar, billing clerk as well as diagnostician. Automating the registration and data transfer process saves us about one hour per day per clinic. Given that the clinics are open up to 72 hours per week, this easily translates to a savings of hundreds of hours and about $12,000 per month. We plan to expand Boston WorkStation into more clinics, which will afford us further savings."
Steve Cohen, executive vice president of Boston Software, noted that with the nation’s implementation of health care reform, there will be a rising demand for services provided by in-store health clinics. "Automating critical workflow will not only benefit The Little Clinic, it also gives its clinicians more time with patients," Cohen said in a statement. "We are proud of the ways our customers are using Boston WorkStation and how quickly their investment pays for itself."
The workstation application is designed to help companies automate common tasks, including revenue cycle projects, interactions with Web sites, integrating new applications, systems and devices, and electronically monitoring and managing user activity.
"I envision using Boston WorkStation for other tasks, particularly the many manual and repetitive tasks associated with Account Receivables," added Waites. "I look forward to expanding our use of automation at our clinics."