Beginning clinic in dental faculty is a refreshing change of tempo for college kids. The joy and anticipation of treating sufferers additionally comes with the duty of maintaining monitor of all the things you do. For a lot of college students who’re accountable for contacting their very own sufferers to schedule appointments, it’s important to have a system in place so nobody is forgotten. A missed appointment right here or a rescheduled go to there can simply trigger a affected person to slide by means of the cracks if we aren’t conscious of all of the care we offer.
The nightmare situation we wish to keep away from is forgetting to reschedule a affected person for an appointment that ought to have been carried out ages in the past. What are the most effective strategies we will use to maintain monitor of our affected person pool — whether or not or not you learn each affected person’s chart day-after-day or week — whereas staying inside the bounds of HIPAA coverage?
A fast search on-line will inform you the 18 identifiers that qualify as affected person private identifiers (title, age, and so forth.), or protected well being data. Our scholar digital digital well being document methods include each single one in all these identifiers (and extra) for a affected person. Whereas we’re logged in securely at college or by means of a distant server, it’s no concern to maintain monitor of sufferers. Nevertheless, most of us don’t dwell at college or should not logged into our EHR on a regular basis. Even those that do have easy accessibility to a distant server might favor different technique of staying organized exterior of the software program options offered to us as clinicians. After discussing with my faculty’s scientific and safety HIPAA compliance consultants, I discovered greatest practices to remain compliant to HIPAA whereas making an attempt to streamline the multitude of sufferers, appointments, courses and different obligations that dental faculty throws at us.
Holding monitor of sufferers inside your establishment’s digital data system
That is in all probability the simplest, most worry-free technique of maintaining monitor of your affected person obligations. Whereas working inside the EHR, you should utilize its a number of options such because the affected person’s chart and notes, the common scratchpad, and even messaging to maintain lists of sufferers’ wants, appointments, and so forth. Whereas working inside the EHR, you aren’t assuming any further danger of exposing non-public data. Nevertheless, the draw back to this technique is the restricted capabilities of the options mentioned; most are merely phrase processors with no capacity for formatting, tables, checklists or dynamic capabilities. This strategy does work, although, when you’re on high of the affected person pool and continuously updating therapies and appointments.
Issues for different strategies of organizing your affected person pool
For individuals who might wish to create new methods of managing your workflow, an important step to safeguard your knowledge is to double-check the safety of your technique together with your faculty’s HIPAA compliance consultants, which can embody the scientific director and IT consultants. Every faculty handles their affected person knowledge in several methods with totally different levels of freedoms. For instance, the mail and workplace productiveness consumer our college makes use of is HIPAA compliant and, subsequently, gives further software program choices to handle affected person data exterior of the EHR. Your faculty might produce other viable choices for managing knowledge exterior of the digital realm as properly, and one of the best ways to search out out is to ask.
~Harish Balasubramani, Pittsburgh ‘22, ASDA Digital Editor