As a successful healthcare provider with more than 100 patients needing care daily and more than 10,000 active patients charts, it became apparent to the physicians that BFMA's workload had exceeded a reasonably sized workforce.
In 1995, BFMA explored modernizing and streamlining the office.
By June 2004, BFMA had supplemented their existing PM system with Chart Connect, a Web-based EMR; five Toshiba Portege M205 Tablet PCs; and, MD-Connect, an online patient portal system.
In 2002, BFMA beta-tested MD-Connect to send lab results and physicians comments to 5,000 (roughly half) of its clinic patients.
However, it was the Tablet PCs that bridged the software programs and brought comprehensive efficiency to BFMA. Weighing as little as the average paper patient chart, a Tablet PC can store thousands of electronic patient charts and medical records.
BFMA employed an IT support company to oversee the installation of the new equipment and software.
Though BFMA's office information flow increased, it became clear that there was a final clog in the system involving the medical assistants.
The inclusion of Tablet PCs, the EMR system, the PM system and the patient portal, dramatically widened the flow of information at BFMA. Transcription costs were eradicated, as staff members employed voice and handwriting recognition, and stylus or keyboard data entry on their Tablet PCs.
In addition, BFMA's bottom line has been substantially improved.
Integrating the Tablet PCs with the new Web-based EMR and patient portal dramatically reduced the amount of paper BFMA required to conduct business.