Most healthcare offices today lack a stand-alone fax machine. Organizations are moving to modern fax technology for a variety of reasons. Fax remains the best way to transmit sensitive information, as the chances of this information falling into the wrong hands decrease when it is faxed rather than sent via other methods.
In fact, 75 percent of documents created by medical professionals today are sent using fax technology. What are the benefits of cloud faxing for healthcare providers?
What is Cloud Faxing?
Before learning the benefits of cloud faxing, a company must understand what this technology is. With cloud faxing, a company no longer needs a machine to send and receive faxes. It can all be done with the help of a driver installed on devices the company already uses. Click here to learn more about how this technology works.
Healthcare workers find the use of the technology increases productivity while allowing the internal workflow to be handled more effectively. Electronic communication is vital in the post-pandemic age, as healthcare workers need to minimize contact to avoid spreading the virus. Cloud technology makes it easy for healthcare workers to exchange documents while remaining in compliance with HIPAA regulations and guidelines.
For those healthcare organizations lacking digital infrastructure, this technology is of great help. It ensures data can be exchanged safely, securely, and reliably. What additional benefits come with the use of this technology?
Electronic health records are used to record and store sensitive information in healthcare facilities. Cloud faxing services make it easy for providers to exchange patient data quickly and easily. This is of importance in certain situations where a patient’s life might be on the line.
As of 2017, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology reported only two in five hospitals had the ability to handle documents from outside providers electronically, although 96 percent of these facilities used electronic health records at that time. Cloud faxing will make it easier to communicate between facilities as more organizations adopt this technology.
Maintaining a dedicated fax line in a healthcare facility is costly. In fact, many phone providers don’t offer phone lines of this type any longer. Those that do continue to use outdated technology that makes sending and receiving documents a difficult proposition.
When the documents don’t arrive at the desired location, both parties must spend time determining where they went and who may have accessed them. This concern is eliminated when the facility moves to cloud-based faxing technology. Security measures are in place to ensure only the intended recipient can see the documents.
Furthermore, a business no longer needs to spend money to maintain a stand-alone fax machine or buy toner and paper for this machine. They also don’t need to invest in file cabinets and other organizational tools to hold medical records. The documents can be stored and transmitted online. These savings quickly add up and far exceed the cost of cloud faxing technology.
Minimize Human Error
When a person uses a stand-alone fax machine, they must manually input the number of the recipient or choose this number for an established list. What happens if the person enters the wrong digit when inputting the number or accidentally chooses the wrong name on the list? Sensitive patient information is sent to the wrong person, and this can lead to costly fines for the healthcare provider.
It’s very frustrating when a medical provider needs a document and isn’t sure where this document has been stored. They must search through various databases or files to find the needed information. When a facility switches to cloud faxing, all documents remain in a centralized repository.
This is the only place a user needs to look, and they can access the necessary documents if they have the proper authorization. In fact, many smaller practices, particularly those in rural areas, benefit greatly from the use of cloud faxing, as this faxing technology is easier to implement and use than electronic health record platforms.
When a healthcare facility switches to cloud faxing, documents no longer need to be printed before they are sent electronically. They are stored online and sent from the application in which they are being used. Most applications that allow a user to print will also allow them to fax. This ensures people don’t see records they aren’t authorized to. When a HIPAA compliance audit is done, the facility can show the auditor the files and the security measures in place to prevent unauthorized access to this data.
As individuals use computers every day to print documents, teaching employees how to fax healthcare records will take little time and effort. The employee simply has to hit the fax button instead of print and the documents will go to the selected recipient.
People can access sensitive data from multiple devices, including smartphones and tablets, with the help of cloud faxing. The data remains in the cloud, so they can access it anywhere they can access the cloud. Employees love this because they no longer need to find a device that is compatible with the fax technology when they must access information. Cloud faxing technology works with the device they have on hand.
Cloud faxing providers often cater to certain industries. Those designed for use in the healthcare field comply with the HIPAA Privacy Rule. This internationally recognized rule protects sensitive health information and applies to many healthcare service providers, including medical practices and health plans.
If a company violates one or more of these standards, it can be heavily fined. The fine varies based on the scale of the violation, the negligence level, and how many people were affected. For this reason, every healthcare provider must choose a cloud faxing provider that meets these standards.
Every business should consider making the move to cloud faxing technology. Doing so offers benefits above and beyond those mentioned above. In addition, the facility can scale the service as needed thanks to the different plans offered by providers today. Learn more about this technology, its benefits, and the costs to the organization. Most healthcare practices find it is what they need to improve operations across the board.