HME Software and Technology Workflow Features
- By David Kopf
- Sep 01, 2011
There are various ways in which HME software offerings improve HME providers’ workflow to create more efficient and more cost-effective business processes. Additionally, there are other technology offerings available to providers, such as delivery management systems and outsourced financial services, that offer workflow features, as well. Let’s take a look at what’s available from both types of offerings:
Core HME Software Packages and Services
AR-Express/ARX-Lite Billing Software
DIABCO – Healthcare Software Solutions LLC
Workflow features: DIABCO’s AR-Express medical billing software includes various features to improve workflow. The Windows-based AR-Express includes electronic claims and payment postings for all Medicare, Medicaid and private insurances, patient billing, inventory, bar coding, collections, over 180 reports, report designer, CMN printing, A/R, and facility billing. The system has the ability to print reports to Excel and/or email using MS Office. It does automated recurring orders, auto posting, purchase orders, mail merge Microsoft Word documents, customizable reports, clinical notes and follow up. AR-Express has multiprovider billing ability, with no limitation on the number of users. The latest addition to AR-Express is ARX-Lite, which offers one-user station.
Workflow features: Brightree’s integrated software solution optimizes and automates workflows to avoid duplication and decrease errors. Brightree workflow examples include: Electronic claims that allowed automation of both the sending of electronic claims and the retrieval of electronic reports, eliminating the need for manual claims batching and claims transmission. “Work in progress” tracking that monitors pending orders to remove bottlenecks that slow the delivery process. The workflow queue monitors order status and how many days it has been there. ERL mmanagement that lets providers work rejections online from a central work queue inside the application. Users just point and click, instead of running reports and searching for transactions. Notes and tasks that automatically documents patient events and provides individual workflow queues for follow up. Each user’s home page lists tasks they are responsible for and each task is date stamped. Together these automated workflows free up employees to spend more time increasing revenue and improving customer service.
CPR+ for HME
Workflow features: CPR+ for HME includes CPR+ Enterprise, a workflow queue that organizes an HME provider’s entire process from intake to billing in manageable steps, creating an “assembly-line” process for every department and letting managers know where bottlenecks exist. Within each step, CPR+ provides “managers,” which are filterable, single-screen work-lists that are populated with tasks and drop out of the list when completed. Using these managers, CPR+ automates every day HME processes, such as creating CMNs and other supporting documentation when needed and tracking when they are sent and due to be returned; creating prior authorization records when needed and automatically generating renewal authorization records for follow-up before the first one expires; accounts receivable management through a one-screen snapshot of every outstanding invoice allowing faster follow-up to lower DSO: and recurring supplies patient management to alert users when the next order is due.
Fastrack Enterprise System for HME
Fastrack Healthcare Systems
Workflow features: Fastrack’s integrated workflow automation feature provides real time status of the providers’ operation. It is designed to catch inefficiencies and potential problems while automating how these issues are handled. It tracks who is responsible for the next step in the order to delivery process. Orders are sent to wireless barcode enabled PDAs in the warehouse for picking and receiving insuring the right product is always picked eliminating the need to pick up incorrectly shipped products. A routing and delivery module determines which orders go on which delivery vehicles and the best driving route. Utilizing PDAs or tablet PCs, delivery personnel perform real-time confirmation of orders right from the patient’s home or facility eliminating the need for the order confirmation process in the back office with the potential for errors. Also automated processes such as billing audits, online eligibility, auto cash posting, scheduling of recurring supply orders, document storage and on-line purchasing all improve the provider’s workflow.
MedFORCE Technologies, Inc.
Workflow features: The MedFORCE WorkFLOW business process management system helps providers remove unnecessary steps from common HME business processes. Most processes in business have multiple steps; procedures such as patient intake, insurance verification, information requests, and everyday tasks depend on various actions and several people handling multiple documents with many steps. WorkFLOW helps providers document and map the steps in each process, establish who is responsible for each step, how long it should take, and who should be notified if the task is overdue. The system is designed to that providers can utilize WorkFLOW for every process in their organization to streamline processes, create accountability and eliminate missed steps and errors.
Noble*Direct / Noble*PreQ
Workflow features: Noble*Direct provides predefined workflow from patient intake through shipment, billing and adjudication. Patient intake includes online eligibility for individual patients and can be requested for “batches” of inquiries, for example, “include all patients whose supplies are being delivered this week”. “CMS same or similar”, real-time claim status and claim summaries are available by patient and inquiries can be designated as being required as part of the claims entry process. Recurring orders and cap rentals can be automatically generated, processed and transmitted all while maintaining accurate inventory levels. Noble*PreQ (pre-qualification) provides a pre-defined methodology for collecting and verifying prospect demographics and eligibility. A database of prospects can be managed separately from patients already being serviced. Document scanning (and retrieval) can be defined within a provider’s workflow; incoming faxes may be indexed to patient records and bar-coding may be implemented for automatic scanning and indexing of documents.
Workflow features: QS/1’s SystemOne software brings efficiency and accountability to HME operations and helps with Medicare compliance. Available as an Internet-based SaaS or installed solution, SystemOne provides better control and profitability to the entire organization’s workflow. Key tasks such as order entry and Medicare-required documentation are simplified. Electronic claims to Medicare, Medicaid, and commercial insurance carriers speed and simplify payment – whether it is consumable items such as diabetic, ostomy, urological, and wound care supplies; or inhalation, immunosuppressive, and oral anticancer medications. SystemOne automatically manages accounts receivable and inventory and supports cash purchases, recurring rentals, and capped rentals. Advanced modules can be added to include functionalities such as accounts receivable, advanced third party, purchase orders, IIAS/SIGIS-certified touch-screen HME Point-of-Sale, document imaging, and integrated IVR, specifically created for HME businesses.
Workflow features: TeamDME! WorkFlow and integrated task manager aids providers in optimizing their business processes to ensure compliance. The system simplifies tasks and provides real-time monitoring of workloads. It also helps providers quickly produce required regulatory documentation and forms and stores them electronically. TeamDME! WorkFlow creates lists that prioritize the tasks users must complete; providers complete reporting to show missing information or past due processes; helps management assign ad hoc tasks, identify a task’s current state and determine deadlines; offers eased distribution work or tasks to specific users or groups; and lets staff create extensive notes that travel with jobs as they are processed.
Workflow features: An all-in-one business management system for DME/HME providers, TIMS Software manages all key aspects of a provider’s business, from order intake, billing, reimbursement, asset management to business intelligence reporting for Medicare, Medicaid and commercial carriers. Other features include claim denial management, rental equipment billing and tracking, G/L financial management, mobile delivery, bar code inventory control, medical gas tracking, data analysis tools, document imaging for all patient records and standards-based interfaces for third party software integration. TIMS Fusion, the company’s latest software addition to TIMS Software, provides a new patient intake system designed to offer a comprehensive intake system. The new system is fully customizable, validates and qualifies patient, equipment and documentation requirements in an intuitive manner. It’s simple and familiar and guides the user through the entire intake process.
Other HME Technology Offerings
Ankota Healthcare Delivery Management (HDM) Software
Workflow features: Ankota provides software to improve the delivery side of HME, measurably reducing operating costs and DSO while increasing capacity. The software has three main functions: 1) optimize scheduling and delivery routes while respecting customer timing and allowing schedulers and dispatchers full control over the operation, 2) track deliveries on a smart phone app (iPhone and Android) with signature capture, barcode reading and GPS positioning, and 3) provide the analytics needed for operations and finance managers to measure business performance. The software’s approach complements existing order processing, inventory and billing software (such as Brightree, Mediware and others), extracting patient and order information automatically when tickets are generated. Ankota’s solution is delivered securely via the software-as-a-service model with subscription pricing, so that providers of all sizes pay-as-they-go without focusing on hardware, upgrades or backups.
Workflow features: AR Dashboard aims to help HMEs improve their accounts receivable efficiency by tying together Strategic AR’s services with the HMEs operations to help them collect on patient copays rather than write off those balances because they don’t have the time and resources necessary to collect them. The web-enabled AR Dashboard allows providers to easily manage and view their patient AR at a single-page glance. The system interfaces with most HME software systems and when combined with timelier correspondence via invoices and past due letters, AR Dashboard improves workflow, decreases DSOs, and increases patient revenue. The AR Dashboard also helps enforce policy while automating workflow while benefitting the bottom line.
Workflow features: ArcLogistics helps HME companies deliver their products and services to the right place, at the right time, for the least cost. With ArcLogistics, you can create optimized routes and schedules based on multiple factors such as customer needs, business rules, vehicle capacities and specialties as well street restrictions. ArcLogistics helps you consider these factors when building routes and schedules. Companies who use ArcLogistics typically see a 30 percent reduction in deliveryrelated costs in the first month, according to Esri. In addition to reducing delivery-related costs, ArcLogistics improves the HME workflow by cutting the amount of time it takes to build daily routes. HMEs interested in test driving the system can contact Esri for a free 30-day unlimited trial.
This article originally appeared in the September 2011 issue of HME Business.