Rapid Relief from Surging Duplicate Rates
By Lora Hefton, Executive Vice President
Rapid adoption of self-registration and self-scheduling to streamline access to telehealth and COVID-19 tests and vaccinations has produced a potentially dangerous unintended consequence: a surge in duplicate patient records.
While empowering patients to schedule themselves for tests and vaccines is an important element of healthcare’s response to the pandemic, it has nonetheless exacerbated the problem of duplicate records and patient matching. Rapid uptake in the use of “self-service” systems by patients who, desperate for appointments but unexperienced with searching for their existing medical records, are inadvertently creating multiple medical record numbers (MRNs). This, in turn, wreaks havoc on healthcare organizations’ EMPI and EHR systems, potentially polluting downstream systems and hampering efforts to gain control over the virus.
In many cases, HIM departments are battling a sudden weekly influx of thousands of new potential duplicates—a volume that will quickly overwhelm even the most regimented department. For many, the only solution has been to take registration and scheduling portals offline until duplicates can be identified and remediated, thereby eliminating a valuable weapon in the battle against COVID-19.
IDRelief™ from Just Associates offers a real solution; one that enables rapid and continuous remediation of high volumes of possible duplicate/crossover pairs without taking away a powerful pandemic response tool. Importantly, in many cases it can be up and running within a week.
Briefly, the client organization provides Just Associates with the potential duplicate report generated by its EHR and a data extract. IDRelief puts that data through a series of steps and processes to identify pairs with like-discrepancy patterns. This includes our proven methodology for leveraging multiple third-party data sources to improve decision-making without the need to perform time-consuming searches. When necessary, data normalization is also undertaken.
A remote team of highly trained experts who understand the uniqueness of patient records also applies our proprietary workflow to the continuous review and identification of duplicates for ongoing remediation. Throughout the entire process, comprehensive quality assurance procedures will ensure IDRelief maintains the unsurpassed industry standard of service for which Just Associates is known.
Accelerating patient access to COVID-19 vaccines and tests is critical to finally ending the pandemic. Hitting pause on self-scheduling and self-registration is simply not an option.
Partnering with Just Associates and IDRelief to address duplicate surges ensure healthcare organizations can continue fighting the good fight without risking their EMPIs and EHRs—or patient safety.
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