1 Patient, 1 Record: Allina Health

OnBase improves patient care, safety and security across the health system

With more than 20,000 employees and 1,812 beds in 12 hospitals and more than 60 clinics across Minnesota and western Wisconsin, Allina Health manages a great deal of information. To provide the best possible patient care, Allina set what some may consider a lofty goal: “One patient. One record.”

Shortly after implementing Epic as its electronic medical record (EMR), the health system knew it would also need to deploy an enterprise solution to manage the unstructured information – i.e., the paper, forms, faxes, clinical images and more – that originates outside of its EMR.

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Allina chose OnBase by Hyland to electronically capture and securely store and manage its clinical and administrative content across its entire enterprise. Doing so both improved information access, but also eliminated those frustrating paper-based, manual processes. Furthermore, by integrating OnBase with Epic, as well as its other line-of-business applications from GE and Lawson, Allina removed information silos, connecting those disconnected systems that slowed down processes in departments from Accounts Payable and Human Resources to Laboratories and Home Health Care.

Create a more complete patient record with OnBase

For Allina, OnBase is much more than just a tactical and departmental software system. It’s a strategic, system-wide investment that delivers real value. By adopting OnBase across the health system, Allina:

  • Creates a more complete patient picture: OnBase allows clinicians and staff to access patient information directly from within the Epic interface, viewing historical medical information alongside current diagnostic information to support more informed decisions for superior patient care.
  • Protects patient privacy and follows HIPAA guidelines: Only authorized users access the information stored in OnBase and only the information requested appears on the screen.
  • Decreases paper, storage and labor costs: By controlling its unstructured content with OnBase, Allina has dramatically reduced its paper dependence and has decreased the amount it spends on expenses like toner, paper, filing materials and storage costs. Through automating manual tasks, OnBase allows employees to redirect their energies to patient care and service.
  • Gives AP staffers more time: By automating manual data entry tasks, OnBase improves accuracy while allowing associates to spend more time on higher-value tasks, like processing and exceptions.
  • Reduces HR response time to employees by 50 percent: In the past, when an employee made a request, it required HR to manually locate the employee file. Now, submitting an e-from triggers OnBase to open a case in Remedy. Now, staff view the related document directly from links on the Remedy screen. The OnBase integration also supports self-service. Employees use the My Allina portal to update information.
  • Reduces time, labor, costs and risks associated with records management and audits: OnBase archives PeopleSoft reports (e.g. payroll reports, benefits statements, etc.) and uses PeopleSoft files to automatically index the documents as well as make any mass changes to them.
  • Elevates the patient experience at registration and expedites billing: When a patient registers, staff members verify insurance cards and IDs in Epic. If it’s their first visit, staffers scan the necessary documents into OnBase. Once in OnBase, patient billing professionals also have immediate access to the documents. This way, the revenue cycle starts at registration.
  • Keeps EOBs in one place – whether received electronically or on paper: RCM scans paper EOBs and imports electronically submitted ones into OnBase. Users retrieve EOBs originating on paper simply by clicking on a link in Resolute. Allina Medical Transportation indexes scanned documents with values taken from the ImageTrend billing system and users quickly retrieve the EOBs in OnBase. “Our staff recognize the advantages of using workflows – they even come up with new ones,” said Kelly Paal, RCM manager at Allina Health. “Once you start asking questions, you realize you can make a big difference in terms of process improvement.”
  • Improves employee morale and process visibility: “With the OnBase integration, staff can access everything they need through a secure online portal,” said Paal. “Being able to offer employees the option of working remotely has allowed us to retain staff. We can also track our inventory now – working from ‘oldest to newest’ so that we know exactly what is outstanding. We really couldn’t say that before.”
  • Improves lab issue tracking to reduce errors: To unite Epic Beaker® with XIFIN, Allina integrates them both with OnBase. Beaker sends requisition result data to OnBase and XIFIN. Lab staffers scan in the requisitions and OnBase automatically indexes them. If information on the requisition doesn’t match what’s in Beaker, OnBase catches the mistake and notifies the managers before it gets to Lab Billing, reducing mistakes made in both systems.
  • Ensures staff read and acknowledge policies, improving compliance in the Lab: With OnBase, Allina knows the most current policies are available and accessible to its employees. Document Knowledge Transfer protocols provide an audit trail of employee acknowledgement, keeping the health system in compliance.
  • Gives associates more time to spend with patients: Using HL7 messaging, OnBase pulls information from BeyondNow to index 5,000 clinical and financial documents per month. Associates access patient information securely on their laptops, not in manila folders, maximizing the time they spend with patients.
  • Increases accuracy: “The information in your solutions is only as good as what goes in,” said Chris Brockman, project manager, Design & Construction. “With manual data entry, you leave accuracy to chance. But, with the integration and the automation of OnBase and Lawson, we know we have the most accurate information.” Now, staff have that accurate information, from employee timecards to purchase orders and meeting minutes, at their fingertips.
  • Provides a single solution for project management: Allina Design & Construction not only uses Compass to manage its projects, it is the only way to submit project requests. The department has received great feedback.
  • Offers a flexible, scalable solution: “Our old system couldn’t scale to meet our needs as our organization has grown,” said Dwight Elthon, senior construction operations manager, Design & Construction. “OnBase is a flexible solution. We can add whatever we need to as we continue to develop it. It’s a full-service project management system.”

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