We all accept little inefficiencies in our day-to-day life. At least, I know I do. Take my dishwasher. If I loaded it more efficiently—carefully placing the glasses and dishes so I can fit more of them in a single load—I might be able to run it one fewer time per week. And think of all the money I’d save on energy and detergent running 52 fewer dishwasher loads a year!
But the truth is I don’t expend the effort, and I live with the costs of inefficient dishwasher loading.
Many healthcare organizations seem to have the same approach to patient registration. They put up with minor errors on patient intake forms, because the errors only take a few minutes to correct. But how much money could they save by optimizing their intake processes to avoid those errors in the first place?
That’s the topic of my new webinar on April 21: The Hidden Cost of Patient Intake Errors.
Small registration errors cost big money
How many forms do your new patients fill out? How many fields and check boxes do those forms have?
Every one of those fields and boxes can be missed or filled out wrong—and every incomplete, incorrect or illegible entry costs your staff members a few minutes to correct. Returning patients sometimes need to add or update information, too, and these new forms add more potential errors to your staff’s workload.
Sometimes, it only takes a minute for one of your staffers to speak to the patient and correct the entry. Other times, they may have to spend valuable time contacting the patient after they’ve left your facility, then correcting the information in your files. So, let’s throw out some ballpark numbers and say…
- Each registration error takes five minutes to correct, and
- There’s one error for every five patients at your organization
If you see just 200 patients a week, that’s 40 registration errors every week that take 200 minutes (3.33 hours) to correct. Multiple 3.33 hours by your staff’s hourly wage, and you’ll get some idea how much patient registration errors cost you every week.
That number, however, is only a fraction of the true cost, because those hours your staff takes correcting mistakes would otherwise be spent on more productive tasks—like helping patients.
And what about errors that don’t get corrected? You might not find out about them until a patient’s claim is denied. Which means you and your staff have to spend even more time working with the patient and their insurance company to make sure you get paid at all.
All told, all those little registration errors can be costing your organization a significant amount of money every week—money you don’t even realize you’re losing.
How digital intake helps avoid registration errors
A simple digital intake solution can help your organization optimize registration processes and avoid most of these costly little errors.
- Patients can fill out digital forms at home (or on their mobile devices) where they’re more comfortable, rather than in your waiting room where they may feel rushed.
- Digital forms show patients every field and check box they must complete, so nothing gets skipped.
- Digital forms eliminate the possibility of a written response being illegible or misread.
- Digital forms are instantly archived and easy to retrieve, saving your staff even more time.
I’ll discuss these benefits in more depth during the April 21 webinar, and Interlace Health Solution Architect Ann Hill will also lead a demonstration of our eSignature solution that can help eliminate those expensive patient intake mistakes.
We probably won’t talk about my dishwasher, but if someone has a suggestion during the Q & A, I’m all ears.
Please join me for The Hidden Cost of Patient Intake Errors on April 21.