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Rice Home Medical

Achieving lean across multiple locations

Committed to the highest levels of customer service, Rice Home Medical CEO Carol Laumer created lean goals to allow maximum focus on patients while instilling confidence that the back office was running as smoothly. In the face of mounting industry requirements and a never-ending stream of fast-approaching deadlines, coordinating across locations was cumbersome and putting reimbursements at risk.

Looking for a solution to ensure business operations were as efficient as possible, she turned to Medforce to straighten out the company’s massive paper problem.

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Challenges

Rice Home has been serving west central Minnesota for more than 20 years. The full-line HME company features specialty departments that focus on respiratory, high-end rehab and sleep apnea.

With five locations, each needing access to vital patient and business documents, Rice Home Medical had a problem. The company had too many original documents flowing from person to person through numerous departments. Too much effort was being diverted to organizing, filing and distributing patient charts, deposits and invoices, taking attention away from customer service and retention. The filing clerk could only focus on patient files, leaving other areas of the business to fend for themselves. There was a substantial backlog that limited document retrieval capabilities. Employees were forced to spend substantial time away from their desks to file, locate or work with paper files.

Testimonials

We are an industry of service. Medforce Technologies has helped me on my mission to help not only our customers, but our own people, by easing the burdens placed upon them and making their jobs easier.

— Carol Laumer, Rice Home Medical CEO

Solution

Initially, Laumer and Rice Home Medical were focused on finding a paperless office solution that would seamlessly connect all locations. They selected ContentCenter, a HIPAA-compliant document management system that handles all electronic filing from patient records to vendor and employee files, whether computer generated, received by fax or scanned handwritten documents. With the industry’s most robust auto-filing and full text search capabilities, many steps in Rice Home Medical business operations were automated, freeing up valuable time in both filing and document retrieval. But the efficiencies didn’t stop there.
 
The process of evaluating, selecting and putting into practice a paperless solution opened Rice Home Medical’s eyes to other opportunities to streamline and improve productivity. Laumer notes, “Implementing Medforce’s technology made us look at all of our processes and helped open doors into the virtual work world. It prompted us to look at the forms we use that were completed by hand and replace them with electronic versions from Medforce’s Form Designer. That enabled more of our documents to be filed automatically with Medforce’s auto-filing technology,”

Further, the company decided to sign on for Medforce’s RemitCenter, a tool that facilitates denial management and enables increased reimbursement.  RemitCenter automatically creates redetermination cover sheets for follow-up with supporting documentation.

In bringing all of the tools together, Rice Home Medical chose to move ahead with the hosted, SaaS option.  They freed up additional staff time by relying on Medforce for server maintenance, upgrade management, data back up solution, and disaster recovery preparations.

Results

Implementing Medforce’s solutions brought immediate measurable savings to the company.  Because of the ease of the web-based technology, each of the five locations can have numerous people look at the same file at the same time. This allows customer service and billing staff to have conversations with the necessary documents conveniently in front of them, ensuring everyone is on the same page. The file clerk is now able to single-handedly keep all of the filing current, from patient files to A/P and Finance. Staff no longer has to rummage through cabinets looking for a purchase order or an invoice from a specific deposit. They are able to find them quickly and efficiently right in Medforce.

Shortly after implementing the Medforce solutions, Rice Home Medical had a site visit at a branch location from the State Board of Pharmacy. The inspector from the board requested a current prescription. “My staff was able to retrieve the file and it was in the inspector’s hands in less than a minute. We didn’t have to dig through paper files and we didn’t have to call the corporate office where all the original documents were stored,” Laumer said. “The inspector was very impressed with our organization!”

With Medforce at her side, helping her team access important documents no matter where they are, Laumer looks forward to continuing to serve her community with the same zeal and enthusiasm, just now with much more efficiency.

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