Improving Efficiency and Communications Across Multi-Location Health System

Cass County Health System (CCHS) is a regional, multi-location health system with more than 380 staff members serving southwestern Iowa communities. They were first introduced to Updox while researching a HIPAA-compliant document management solution. While CCHS uses Epic for their electronic health record, they were impressed by the capabilities that Updox offered and the ability to review, edit, and time sign documents from the office, a clinic or via any mobile device.  More than just a unique feature, the ability to time stamp a signature was a requirement for the nursing homes supported by CCHS. 

Healthcare Communication Software Multi-Unit FacilitiesElaine Berry, MD, led a team seeking ways to streamline processes and support the system’s IT department in developing more consistent practices. CCHS, led by their Performance Improvement department, worked with their Community Care Transition Team (CCTT), comprised of staff from care facilities across southwestern Iowa.  CCTT’s purpose is to streamline the transition of care when moving patients from one level of care to another, focusing on patients’ best interests and outcomes, and, in doing so, reducing and eliminating preventable readmissions to healthcare facilities. CCTT evaluated Updox and tested how the service worked across their clinical sites. After passing those tests, they chose to use Updox.

Implementing a new system and process can be challenging for larger, multi-location organizations. But, the team persevered and initiated Updox by adding one provider every week, as well as their major nursing homes and community partners.

“People were concerned about learning something new, but Updox has a lot of advantages, such as access from anywhere with an internet connection,” says Rod Goodemote, CCHS systems analyst. “This allows the provider to review documents in the office, working at a clinic or satellite facility, traveling or attending a training event. When they realized how efficient that made them, staff were sold on Updox.”

The system also uses Direct Secure Messaging through Updox to connect providers. “We’re adding external facilities via Updox Refer and Share so we have secure communications channels between providers and nursing homes, as opposed to sending information by fax,” says Rod.

“Faxes create rework and phone calls disrupt workflows. Updox saves time and money and I don’t know how hospital systems get by without it,” says Rod. “Before, we’d get ‘fax undelivered’ notices and have to call offices, which would interrupt patient care. Now, we have none of that. We’re also able to quickly adjust phone numbers if someone calls to tell us their fax machine is down.  We can all work seamlessly without inconveniencing patient care staff.”

“Updox support is outstanding and our customer success manager (every Updox account has one) helps us think through new processes,” says Rod. “It’s a great service and it keeps adding value to our organization.”

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