Case Study: Wollongong Hospital – Custom care solution for 20,000+ client files that ticks all boxes.

Case Study Snapshot

Tracey Commisso, Administration Manager, Department of Gastroenterology, Wollongong Hospital

A 12 month customisation and testing process has ensured that Info-Organiser is now completely meeting the very specific document management needs required by the Wollongong Hospital Department of Gastroenterology in NSW.

WAS THERE A PARTICULAR DRIVING NEED THAT MADE YOU SEEK OUT AN ELECTRONIC FILING SOLUTION?

“Basically we were completely out of space. Twelve months ago we had reached 22,000 physical client files in our department. 400 boxes of older files were in a storage area and current files were kept on two compactus units that had actually become too heavy for the staff to push around. Keeping track of the location of each file was cumbersome too. We had an Excel spreadsheet that had to be updated every time we moved a file from one area to another! Then there was the constant issue of having to wait for the doctors to finish with a client file before it could be moved onto the next stage in the process.

“I knew I would need electronic filing software that could be 100% customised to our needs… Info-Organiser ticked all the boxes.”

WHAT WAS YOUR MAIN REQUIREMENT FOR DOCUMENT MANAGEMENT?

Foremost we required a solution that would be extremely easy for our nine doctors to use so I knew I would need software that could be 100% customised to our needs. In essence we looked at how our doctors were using the paper based system and asked how we could copy it in a digital framework. Info-Organiser have been able to replicate that as close as possible, right down to keeping the same colour coding of the folders and simulating our old sticky note system by using highlighting in files. There were other providers we talked to as well but some had more functions than we would ever need and I knew I could get budget approval if I presented a solution that did exactly what we needed – nothing less and nothing more. Info-Organiser ticked all the boxes.

“The best part is now everyone, doctors and admin, can find and access client files immediately.”

DID YOU HAVE ANY OTHER CUSTOM FEATURE REQUIREMENTS?

As we tested the software, and began to understand how to use it, I was able to talk directly to Info-Organiser’s software developer about what was possible with adding features. I added an auto uptake system for all patient letters that finds and virtually sucks the letter created in Word straight into Info-Organiser. I also had templates developed to auto-generate letters from the system. One of our main searches is for GP referral letters so I had a shortcut built in to intuitively do that too. It has been very helpful to have that level of accessibility with the development team.

FAVOURITE FEATURE?

That I can sort all the client data being entered by whatever criteria I need to – from type of document to chronological view to alphabet view and more. I can instantly see what the admin girls have filed for a specific timeframe or for the whole day. Since it is a very new process for us I can also quickly identify where any filing conventions have not been followed. I am able to see who entered the data and go directly to that person to do any retraining and make corrections. In a paper based system that kind of error might never be found.

HOW SMOOTH WAS THE TRANSITION FROM PAPER TO ELECTRONIC?

On the morning of the actual go live day just one month ago I was very nervous. I imagined all kinds of resistance or problems. It was actually so easy! I did a training session for the doctors and they have been great at using it ever since. All the admin have now embraced it too. The best part is now everyone, doctors and admin, can find and access client files immediately.

WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO THE 22,000 PAPER FILES?

The number of files in storage is reducing every day. All the data from our old Excel based system was imported into Info-Organiser so all 22,000 clients are in there already. Every time one of these existing clients returns to the Department for a follow up, we scan their entire paper file first and add it into their history in the new system. All new clients automatically go into Info-Organiser to begin with. So it’s now just a matter of time before all those old files are electronically archived. I am already thinking about how to better use the extra space once it is free of files!”