Home Forums Practice Management Is paperless really a good idea?

0 voices, 10 replies
  • Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1500

    From what I can tell, electronic dental records are not only increasingly more costly and increasingly more dangerous than paper dental records, but they require more training than paper and offer dental patients no tangible benefits over paper. If this is correct, should dentists be encouraged to go paperless?

    Elijah Desmond
    Member
    @elijah
    #1504

    What’s even more  interesting is that some states are even making it mandatory to go paperless. Do you have any idea why that would be?

    Christopher Hoffpauir
    Member
    @christopherhoffpauir1
    #1505

    Darrell,

    You make some interesting points. Would you care to expand upon them? I can certainly see that training, particularly for older staff that didn’t grow up in the digital age might present a problem. Certainly hacking would be a consideration when weighing the risks of going with digital. I can see that a case could be made that digital theft is more likely to occur than physical theft of records..

    On the opposite side of the coin, One must consider the use of modern technologies like Digital radiographs, Intra oral photographs, Dental scanners, CBCTs ect. It would be very difficult to run a practice that embraces these technologies without using digital patient records.

     

    Certainly an an interesting topic for discussion!

     

     

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1506

    Minnesota is the only state I know of which has tried to outlaw paper dental records. There may be others. The two reasons cited for the 2007 law's repeal years later:  Increased cost and danger over paper dental records.

    See: “Solo Practitioners Exempt from EHR Implementation in Minnesota.” By Vera Gruessner for EHR Intelligence, May 21, 2015.

    https://ehrintelligence.com/2015/05/21/solo-practitioners-exempt-from-ehr-implementation-in-minnesota/

    Minnesota’s EHR mandate was the EHR industry’s canary. That bird was stillborn.

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1507

    Christopher Hoffpauir, do advances in digital technology require Protected Health Information to function?

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1508

    What if the patient's identifiers such as name, address, birth date, social security number…. were all replaced with an in-house reference number which is never stored alongside PHI on a computer… Just an idea.

    Charlotte Smiled
    Participant
    @charlottecharlottesmiled-com
    #1530

    All I know is doing the same thing two to three times was such a time drain chair side!  With paper charts, we still have to enter everything into the software.

    Some benefits of going paperless:

    • You can actually read all clinical notes
    • Charting can be done once and as dental work is complete, the charting is updated automatically
    • No one needs to get up and pull a chart in order to answer patient questions on the phone or in person.
    • Insurance is processed MUCH faster

     

    -Get a great IT guy to make sure everything is HIPPA compliant and protected agains theft

    -Back everything up to a cloud daily

    -Train the staff well right from the beginning and anytime the software updates to a new version

     

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1531

    I'm not arguing that paper is more convenient than digital. In fact, convenience for the provider (not the patient) is its ONLY advantage over paper. The disadvantages:

    – Dental EHRs are more expensive than paper records, raising the cost of services,

    – EHRs are less secure than paper records,

    – EHRs require more staff training than paper, initially as well as recurring, and most importantly

    – EHRs offer dental patients nothing tangible to offset their increased expense and danger.

    If solutions to these major deficiencies with digital are not found, it is inevitable that the marketplace will self-correct:  Informed patients, many of whom will have received one or more breach notifications, will seek out paper-based dentists.

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1532

    “Ransomware – fail to prepare, prepare to fail – When it comes to falling victim to a ransomware attack, it's not a case of ‘if' but ‘when'.” By Matt Body for ITProPortal June 25, 2018

    https://www.itproportal.com/features/ransomware-fail-to-prepare-prepare-to-fail/

    Most dental practices fail within 6 months of reporting a breach. That’s a high price to pay for the convenience of digital.

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1534

    “Patient Privacy, Data Security Top Cost for Healthcare Consumers – Consumers ranked patient privacy and data security above cost of care as the most important concerns they have about healthcare, according to a recent survey of 1,000 consumers by health insurance company Aetna.” By Fred Donovan for HealthIT Security, June 28, 2018.

    https://healthitsecurity.com/news/patient-privacy-data-security-top-cost-for-healthcare-consumers

    Darrell Pruitt
    Spectator
    @darrelldk2gmail-com
    #1536

    “Cybersecurity in the Dental Office: A Holistic Approach,” by Gary Salman was published in the June 2018 Compendium of Continuing Education in Dentistry.

    https://www.aegisdentalnetwork.com/cced/2018/06/cybersecurity-in-the-dental-office-a-holistic-approach

     

    Salman:  “The technology landscape has shifted dramatically in the past 12 to 18 months, and hackers are setting their sights on healthcare entities, now more so than ever before. Practices across the country are being impacted by ransomware and malware attacks that shut down and compromise networks. To combat these sophisticated attacks, practitioners need to take a holistic approach to cybersecurity.”

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