This blog is called Information is currency because I believe that organizations needs to be as passionate about managing their information as they are about their money. I just read the surprising statistic that in health care, the average is getting 1,100 faxes a month. There is a lot of talk in the information management about going paperless (i.e. paper-lite because we can never be free from paper), but it appears that these doctors are in the stone ages when it comes to going digital. The article goes on to state that only about 50% of doctors’ offices have a computerized system for patient records and referrals.

The reason why this is such a mess for the health care industry is because they do not see any financial pitfalls. If they saw a dip in the revenue cycle they would make a change. The following is from an article in the Wall Street Journal about a company called, “Athenahealth Inc.” which is trying to move to medical management to the cloud.:

The worst paperwork nightmare for doctors, whether they’re employed or independent, is the clinical-information supply chain [such as prescriptions and patient referrals]. But doctors don’t get paid any differently whether their information is a mess and gets lost or not. Because the doctor isn’t stung financially yet, it hasn’t been their greatest complaint. Their greatest complaint has always been the revenue cycle. Because if you don’t get your claims paperwork right, you don’t get paid.

Digitizing health records and moving them to the cloud may not affect the revenue cycle, but it could lower overhead by increasing productivity and efficiency. Also, in an industry where malpractice is so prevalent better information governance can reduce risk of indictment.

You can read the full article in the Wall Street Journal at Boss Talk: Updating Doctors’ Offices With the Help of Cloud Services