The process for entering immunizations has become more complicated over the past few years. This is mainly due to the increased requirements from state Immunization Registries. There are additional fields that we have not had to enter in the past such as CVX and NDC codes. The entry of these fields creates an extra level of administrative burden to your practice on top of the many fields already necessary for good documentation. This is an opportunity to review and leverage possible technical solutions, such as bar code scanning, that will make this data entry easier on your practice.
All of this information is required when participating in the state immunization registries for the Meaningful Use or MIPS programs. In addition, some states are now requiring practices to participate in the state registry in order to continue receiving state supplied vaccinations. While the state immunization registries will allow for better quality healthcare, it does create potential workflow issues within the clinical practice.
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Benefits of Bar Code Scanning
Bar code scanning has been available for quite some time. However, it has not been a technology widely used within the outpatient physician practice. It is frequently used by hospitals who are delivering medications to patients. There are several key benefits of implementing bar code scanning into your outpatient practice.
- Patient Safety
- Inventory Tracking
- Decreased Data Entry
- Improved Billing Practices
- Easy Access to Reports
Other Uses for Bar Code Scanning
The benefits of bar code scanning go beyond just immunizations.
- Use it for any medication that is administered within your practice
- Use it for the distribution of durable medical equipment to your patients during an office visit
- Create your own bar codes for things you want to track that may not have a bar code available
Using this type of technology allows you to really begin taking advantage of the efforts you have put into implementing an EMR into your practice. Often times, practices don’t go back and review available options to make the daily workflow better for them. This is a great opportunity to review a set of specific workflows to determine if bar code scanning is a solution that will make the EMR work better for your practice.