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Surprising EHR Tweet of the Day

Posted on September 28, 2011 I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

I saw this tweet and decided I couldn’t pass up posting it. When I read it, all I could think was, Yeah……right!! (yes, that last part is in the sarcasm font)

@NewIQ – David Whitaker
The next five years will be pivotal for EHR solutions. The cloud presents a real opportunity for the creation of a truly dynamic system.
Followed by…
I would not be surprised if the folks at Google or Facebook werent already working on a strategy. #EHR #cloud

I think the last thing Facebook is thinking about is anything to do with EHR. They might be interested in healthcare apps for “consumers” managing their health, but they couldn’t give a rip about EHR. They might even consider helping doctors connect with patients on Facebook (although, even that I think is unlikely), but not an EHR.

Google has probably thought of EHR back when Google Health launched. Obviously they chose to go with PHR and we see how that turned out. I don’t think Google could make a worse mistake than to try and create an EHR.

Yeah, Facebook or Google doing EHR…that would be surprising.

Guest Post: GFI FaxMaker Solves Healthcare Customers’ Faxing Needs

Posted on I Written By

John Lynn is the Founder of the HealthcareScene.com blog network which currently consists of 10 blogs containing over 8000 articles with John having written over 4000 of the articles himself. These EMR and Healthcare IT related articles have been viewed over 16 million times. John also manages Healthcare IT Central and Healthcare IT Today, the leading career Health IT job board and blog. John is co-founder of InfluentialNetworks.com and Physia.com. John is highly involved in social media, and in addition to his blogs can also be found on Twitter: @techguy and @ehrandhit and LinkedIn.

Guest Post: This is a sponsored guest post written by James Taylor and provided by GFI FaxMaker.

HIPAA requirements are becoming a part of every technology discussion, especially within the healthcare industry. One of the biggest pain points for both doctors and dentists is faxing. The HIPAA requirements for faxing EMR/EHR records are fairly straightforward, and also fairly onerous and time consuming, and healthcare organizations are looking for better ways to do faxing. This is where GFI’s fax server software, GFI FaxMaker, steps into the scene.

Installation

Installation is easy, though it does require a domain admin account (more on that below). It can use a fax modem, FoIP SaaS service from Brooktrout, or ISDN lines, and can be installed right on your Exchange server or integrate with Exchange (or other email systems) using an SMTP connector. Install gets a 9/10.

Integration

GFI FaxMaker almost sells itself just in how easily it can be integrated into practically any client’s existing infrastructure, whether they are a private practice, or part of a huge hospital network. The email to fax and print to fax capabilities make it easy for end-users to send faxes, and helps to ensure HIPAA compliance in several ways; these include:

  1. Fax numbers can be pulled from the email client address book (GAL),
  2. Delivery confirmation reports can be automatically generated and stored with the sent faxes,
  3. Incoming faxes are delivered directly to the recipient; no paper left lying around, and no need for the user to go stand by the fax machine waiting for an incoming fax,
  4. Faxes can be stored as PDF or TIFF, and routed to network shares. Practically any client’s medical records program for EMH/EHR can consume these with no need for extra work making this another way to plug directly in to programs without needing to write any code.
  5. The ability to ‘print to fax’ makes every Windows program my clients use ‘fax capable’

    Share the printer and clients can just double-click it to start faxing from any application.

making it so easy to plug into existing infrastructure earns this a 9/10.

Fax routing flexibility

GFI FaxMaker’s routing capabilities are its best feature. You can automatically deliver faxes to users, network folders, or printers, based on several different attributes including:

If your senders’ fax machines identify themselves by CSID, you can route using that, or you can set up extensions for each user without having to get dedicated lines. Of course, it can use dedicated lines too. OCR rocks, since it can scan for the recipient’s name and deliver the fax by ‘reading’ the To: line on a cover page or finding a keyword in the body of the fax. Just don’t expect it to decipher a doctor’s handwriting.

It can also automatically archive inbound and outbound faxes as PDF or TIFF format, making it easy to import faxes into other programs or to keep a secured archive.

Most organizations are very big on electronic archiving, and they don’t have the budget to get every single doctor and PA in the practice their own fax number, so I give this a 9/10.

What I like

GFI FaxMaker installs very easily, integrates with every email environment without having to install anything on the mail server, and sets up a shared printer so users can simply print to fax. It is easy to setup, easy to understand, and just works. Getting rid of the fax machines, the stocks of ink, and all the paper left lying around that goes along with a traditional fax is great, and with no more incoming faxes hitting the output tray, there’s no chance of confidential patient information (EMR/EHR) being at risk. Considering how big a concern that is for HIPAA compliance, and how little space most offices have to ‘secure’ a traditional fax machine, this is a huge benefit and earns GFI FaxMaker a 10/10 for convenience and compliance.

What I don’t like

The one thing I don’t care for is that GFI FaxMaker wants to run under the account of a domain admin. Small offices running SBS don’t seem to care, but hospitals with Information Security departments take exception to this. Two things; no software should want to run as a domain admin, and any software that isn’t going to run as system ought to run under a service account. If you let it run under your user account, it will break in a couple of months when you change your password. In terms of how I rate this product, that counts off more than anything else.

I would also prefer the print drivers to be signed by Microsoft; I know that takes time, but it is a jarring warning in bold red when you go to install it on a Windows server.

The bottom line

GFI FaxMaker is an excellent faxing solution for health care organizations, whether they are private practice or attached to major medical centers. It’s easy to use, is able to integrate into existing systems, and contributes to HIPAA compliance – making itself a great solution on its own merits; the amount of time, money, and administrative support it saves your IT support helps it pay for itself in no time. I rate it a very strong 9/10, and bet you will too.

With all that it has to offer, GFI FaxMaker may be the best new application your healthcare practice has ever seen. But don’t just base it on my great experience, see for yourself.

Could a Smartphone Give You an Eye Exam?

Posted on I Written By

I’ve said it before, and I will say it again: It never ceases to amaze me the things that can be done with a smartphone.  The MIT Media Lab has developed a device that can attach to a smartphone and essentially provide an eye exam.  Here is the description they gave with the video below:

Our small, portable solution allows for anyone, anywhere to get an eye exam, and access a care provider through the mobile network. The setup consists of three parts: a smart phone, a hardware app and a software app.

Snap the NETRA adapter onto a smart phone loaded with NETRA software, follow the simple instructions, and quickly receive your prescription for glasses right on the phone. NETRA fits snugly in a pocket and requires minimal training to operate.

Starting with refractive errors and cataracts, NETRA and CATRA are our first of a growing line of solutions geared towards eye health. Stay tuned to our twitter feed for continual developments over the coming months.

 

 

They claim that it only requires minimal training, and judging by the video it looks pretty simple.  Obviously this won’t provide a comprehensive eye exam, but for people who can’t afford to go long distances to a doctor this could easily help them to see better.

As someone who has never really had vision problems, I can only imagine how difficult it must be to deal with not seeing well.  On the other hand I have seen my wife deal with poor vision and all of the difficulties it provides when she is not wearing her glasses.  Now people who previously had little to no chance of getting a prescription will no longer have to suffer through those difficulties.

It is also great to see that the caliber of people at MIT are working on healthcare devices and apps.  As more and more high quality developers get into the industry, the quality of new applications should only improve, and improve our lives.

More information is available on their website.