DMH Contract Nursing Services is a private contracted nursing services company for individuals in their own home or Adult Foster Homes. Her clientele reside in Multnomah and Washington Counties in Oregon. Deanna Hancock, owner and founder of DMH, is a long-term care community nurse, or LTCCN. After 20+ years in the hospital industry, Deanna finished her Master’s Degree and developed her own business as a CRN, or contract nurse, for the state of Oregon, where she specializes in developmentally disabled and medically fragile clients. Michelle Ford is her ‘super human’ office manager and is integral to the success of the business. Together, these two take great pride in providing the highest level of care for their clients.
During a typical day, Deanna gets up early and works on paperwork from her home office. She then visits anywhere from 2-6 clients each day, completing medical and safety assessments, reviewing medications, and providing education. A large part of her job is something she calls ‘delegation,’ where she teaches a non-healthcare provider a nursing task in order for them to care for the patient on a daily basis.
Healthcare is a paper-heavy business, and the amount of paperwork required can be paralyzing. In fact, these visits often required ‘heavy lifting’—as Deanna estimates she had to transport about 30 pounds of paper with her in a day. She’d find herself handwriting notes during client visits, then having to go home and type, print, sign, fax, and sort paperwork. She had stacks and stacks of folders brimming with papers and forms containing important information like billing, appointment dates, medications, and prior authorization dates for 130 active clients. Plus, she is required by law to maintain client records for 7 years, so her home office became clogged with cabinets and boxes full of archived materials that were very vulnerable to disaster or security breach.
With the massive amounts of paper they were dealing with, not to mention the complicated HIPAA laws they are subject to, Deanna started looking for an electronic document management system that was HIPAA-compliant. That’s when she found eFileCabinet, and she knew it was exactly what she needed.
“Implementation was fantastic,” Deanna says. “Customer Service held our hand and Michelle, my Office Manager, was a godsend. We are unique because this company is just the two of us—we don’t delegate pieces to different departments. We handle it all.” eFileCabinet has completely changed their ability to do business, and saved them about half of all time previously spent on paperwork. “Without a doubt the biggest benefit has been decreasing the steps in the workflow processes. We’ve also decreased the amount of paper. And, I’ve reduced my liability risk with HIPAA. It’s a huge benefit.”
Prior to eFileCabinet, Michelle and Deanna estimate there were between 27-32 steps to their workflow, most completed manually. As part of their implementation process, they sat down and mapped out the workflow and designed an automated workflow process, cutting the steps down to just 12, “Our goal is to get the process down to 9 steps or less,” explains Deanna. “How do you equate that to time saved? It’s just amazing. It’s just so much more efficient.”
Now that she is an ‘electronic’ contract nurse, Deanna finds that client care and her schedule are much more flexible. She can now devote more time to client visits and outside care coordination, where before it was pure tedium trying to document phone conversations and other time-consuming but important details. She estimates that she has been able to recoup about 20% more in billing as she is documenting more accurately and much more quickly.
Deanna’s typical day still looks pretty similar now…she still gets up early to work on documentation from her home office before starting onsite client visits and coordinates throughout the day with Michelle. But now, eFileCabinet allows them to be HIPAA compliant and almost completely paperless. For client visits, Deanna simply carries a laptop to their home or the adult foster homes. Michelle can complete billing and other vital processes from any location, even if she leaves town, which means invoices get paid. “eFileCabinet is a product we will continue to rave about to other business owners,” says Michelle.
The only downside? Deanna may need to find another way to get in her weightlifting in each day, as she has shed about 30 pounds of paper—and kept it off—through eFileCabinet.