Technology is a vital component of innovation and process improvements in many areas of modern healthcare. The conversion from paper forms to digital forms on smartphones and tablets is now standard business procedure for many hospitals. Yet, some organizations still use paper forms and slower manual procedures that impede the speed and accuracy of the patient consent process.
In order for a patient to make a sensible decision regarding their treatment, they need accurate information, especially when it concerns surgical services or radiology, in which the patient is often under duress and the potential for complications is higher than other routine services.
Beyond saving time, a mobile form solution for the patient consent process can improve employee productivity and lead to greater business growth but there are many other benefits as well.
- Seamless EHR System Integration
EHR systems are one of the cornerstones of modern healthcare organizations and many offer a tethered aspect of electronic signature capability―a potential productivity killer.
With a mobile form solution, the physician or nurse is already in the EHR system with the patient’s record pulled up. They can then navigate to and select the consent forms for applicable procedures, which will come up in a signature capture application. The physician can then go through the informing process, review forms, and discuss the surgical or radiological procedure with the patient.
- Enhance Consent Workflow
A mobile form solution easily integrates with your EHR system, allowing patients to sign the correct documentation on a mobile device and thus streamlining the consent process. The patient reads the form, usually on a tablet, at their bedside and signs the form with their finger or a stylus, saving time for both staff and themselves.
- Cut Paper and Mitigate Risk
U.S. businesses waste $8 billion annually managing paper―with the average cost being $220 to reproduce a lost document―according to one recent estimate.
A mobile form solution reduces costs associated with paper by digitizing consent forms, and it mitigates risk by ensuring that forms are always the most up-to-date version and providing the required fields and validation features that verify that the patient actually comprehends the consent form―a vital component contributing to patient safety.
- User-Friendly, Mobile Tablet Experience
There were nearly 238 million mobile device users in the U.S. alone as of 2017. That figure is impressive proof that the vast majority of the population is not only familiar with, but comfortable using mobile devices.
Many tethered devices make it harder for the patient to properly review the informed consent process with their physician. With a tablet-like device, patients can see the text as the physician goes over it, make better decisions regarding informed consent, and have a better overall visual experience.
- On-Demand Form Selection
Speed throughput with intelligent, faster data collection is an important feature that promotes enhanced patient consent processes.
The ability to fill out forms in seconds, not minutes, allows medical personnel to be more productive and deliver a better patient experience, not to mention contribute to the overall profitability of the organization.
- Required Content Review and Understanding Confirmation Fields Using Patient Initials or a Checkbox
Mobile form solutions that feature legible, easily understandable formats contribute to the patient’s complete understanding of the consent process.
Mobile solutions that feature checkboxes and other fields for patient signatures act to promote patient safety and allow patients to confirm that they fully understand the surgical or radiological procedures.
- Automatic Date/Time Stamp for Data Integrity
One of the most compliance-friendly features of a mobile consent solution is the fact that forms on the device can include built-in security features.
Mobile forms can include features like single-sign on, GPS, and timestamps that let administrators know exactly who filled out a form, as well as when and where the form was filled out―a win-win when audit time comes.
- Immediate Archival of Completed Consent Forms
Because mobile form solutions are entirely electronic, the consent process is immediate―which not only eliminates concerns over lost or improperly completed forms, but also ensures proper archival of said forms and promotes better compliance.
Several components go into a quality, comprehensive mobile form solution during the patient consent process. But if the solution doesn’t provide features promoting patient safety and comprehension of forms, along with compliance and speed, you may want to consider one that does.