HealthWare Systems Blog

ActiveXCHANGE (formerly ActiveFAX) Creates Real Savings for Hospitals

Posted on Tue, Nov 03, 2015

When fax solutions get removed from the IT agenda, so do a lot of cost-saving opportunities—some pretty big ones, in fact. That’s why we’re dedicating our fall blog calendar to the issue of faxes in healthcare, and to tools like ActiveXCHANGE (formerly ActiveFAX).  We would like to reopen the conversation at your facility…

Faxing isn’t sexy. We get it.

No one likes to invest in outdated technology—least of all cash-strapped hospital leaders, with one eye on patient data security and the other on EHR adoption/interoperability goals. But “outdated” is a relative term. And when you look at the reality inside many admissions or surgical departments—and the paper chase surrounding faxed physician orders, third-party test results, insurance documents, etc.—calling faxes “outdated” is far from accurate.

Thousands of hospitals still receive a high volume of faxes every day—especially smaller facilities and those serving rural communities. Just look at any current job post seeking patient access associates or medical orders specialists. You’ll see that fax-based responsibilities (collecting, copying, scanning, verifying) are anything but obsolete.

Besides that, investing in improved fax management doesn’t mean overhauling your legacy infrastructure and pouring money into the latest and greatest hardware. On the contrary, it means adding a simple layer of software to augment your fax server (or replace your physical machines if you’re still offline).  With ActiveXCHANGE (formerly ActiveFAX) specifically, it means putting a standardized workflow/indexing system behind all fax exchanges, so your teams can eliminate busy work along with lost files and orders.

Here are five areas in which ActiveXCHANGE creates actual savings:

1. Reviewing, Filing, and Retrieving Orders

Clients often tell us that before implementing ActiveXCHANGE, they maintained stacks of pending physician orders, waiting to be collected, reviewed, and addressed. A standardized, digital workflow for faxes not only improves staff productivity, it improves patient experiences in the form of faster, more professional service.

2. Providing Faxed Information to Ancillary Departments

Here again, when orders and test results need to be forwarded internally, teams lose time on fax transmission, confirming the receipt of materials, etc. With a manual process, you’re also opening the door to wrong fax numbers/departments and unintended recipients. By letting associates route faxes directly and securely with the click of a button, ActiveXCHANGE helps YOU reclaim hours of work.

3. Handling Incomplete Orders

What percentage of your physician orders are faxed back to physicians due to missing information? How long does it take to fill out a cover sheet and send a reply to the physician’s office, or else call for clarification? Meanwhile, what are you doing to measure these occurrences, and work with referring physicians/partners to avoid them?

4. Checking Orders for Medical Necessity

In a 2013 study sponsored by the American Hospital Association, 96% of hospitals reported that medical necessity denials were the most costly, complex denials involving CMS. Sixty-three percent of hospitals said they spent more than $10K managing the RAC [appeals] process during the first quarter of 2013 alone; 46 percent spent more than $25K, and 10 percent spent over $100K.

By contrast, facilities utilizing ActiveXCHANGE can reduce denials associated with medical necessity by up to 100%.

5. Eliminating Copy Costs and Lost Orders

At high-volume fax facilities, it’s not uncommon to receive 50,000 faxes per month. Let’s say your facility receives just a fraction of that volume: 20 percent, or 10,000 faxes per month. And let’s say half of those faxes need to be printed in order to share them with patients or outside departments. At an estimated cost of $0.45 per printout (ink, toner, paper), your consumable costs total more than $2,200 per month—not including machine maintenance or the labor associated with refilling paper trays/ink supplies.

Are you comfortable wasting $2,200 per month on faxing’s material costs alone? There’s a smarter, more cost-effective solution. We can walk you through it in about 15 minutes…