Case Study: Adopts Best-of-Breed DocuTAP EMR to Improve Patient Management
2 clinic locations
Opened in 2005
44 staff members
160 patients per day per two clinics
Workers’ Compensation Visits
Uses full DocuTAP platform, which includes:
DocuTAP Customer Since:
Owl Now Urgent Care is a one-state, physician-owned urgent care in the Tampa, Florida area. Providing urgent care, occupational medicine, and workers’ compensation services, Owl Now has two walk-in clinics, serving a high volume of 160 patients per day across all locations. They opened their first clinic in 2005 in Lakeland, FL and added a second location in Winter Haven, FL in 2012.
Staff estimates the range of ages served are 50% pediatrics and 50% adults. Owl Now offers on-site labs, splinting, and x-ray services. Patient services include sports physicals, DOT exams, and flu vaccines.
Owl Now Urgent Care is a part of a medical group with five specialty clinics. The group was using a one-size-fits-all EMR option to run all its varying healthcare services. Because of the different workflow natures of each clinic, they decided the best solution would be to upgrade to specialty-specific EMRs.
Owl Now tried several EMRs for all its sister clinics, but realized EMR vendors who boasted they were able to serve multiple specialties weren’t really able to. Previous EMRs required an inefficient, impractical combination of paper and digital charting.
Prior EMRs also lacked integration among front desk registration, patient charts, and billing—making double entry of patient data a normal occurrence. Owl Now was unable to customize former EMRs for their specific workflow needs. All of these issues resulted in Owl Now never fully implementing an EMR solution prior to DocuTAP.
Solution / Approach
Vetting upwards of 20 different EMR options, Owl Now knew the best option for their clinics would be best-of-breed software. Instead of trying to fit urgent care within a generic EMR, staff understood an urgent care-specific EMR would give them a firm foundation for complete workflow and billing efficiency—and less frustration by truly eliminating paper workarounds.
“We saw DocuTAP years before we tried our multi-specialty EMRs,” recalled Diane Brannen, Owl Now Clinic Administrator. When Owl Now was ready to switch to a best-of-breed EMR, DocuTAP was the first one on their mind. “DocuTAP was urgent care specific. We liked that it already came with urgent care templates, and you didn’t have to build your own. We could start using it right away,” Brannen noted.
In 2014, Owl Now fully implemented DocuTAP as its integrated EMR and practice manager. Clinical staff was comfortable with the EMR by noon on the first day of using the system. On the second day of using DocuTAP, the staff had a record door-to-door patient time of 20 minutes.
“I can document an ear infection in three minutes. Most patients with procedures can be documented in under five minutes.”
— Elizabeth Drissel, Physician Assistant
Owl Now wanted to eliminate double entry of information into their previous EMRs, and have a fully integrated system so all patient data could be shared across the EMR, practice manager, and billing. Here are the results of their experiences with DocuTAP:
Implementation & Ease of Use
Owl Now’s launch date to use DocuTAP was expedited from the usual 30-day implementation process so staff could begin using the EMR sooner. “Our Super Users were the ones that watched the training,” said Brannen. “Our staff was able to be trained while seeing patients because of the user friendliness of DocuTAP,” she added. Owl Now began using DocuTAP at both of their clinics on the same day.
Elizabeth Drissel, a physician assistant at Owl Now, noted that the training on the Learning Management System helped her customize templates before using DocuTAP in clinic. “The training was very simple. It was nice to do the modules for all the user roles. I could pick and choose what material to cover,” Drissel remembers.
Not only has the clinical staff embraced DocuTAP, even those who balked at former EMRs said they were able to quickly learn functionality as they went. “How can paper compete [with DocuTAP]?” said Sanjay Ganpat, Manager at Owl Now.
Wait times reduced immediately. Within five days of using DocuTAP, waiting room times dropped from 30 minutes to 10 minutes. And their average door-to-door time in that same time period fell from 90 minutes to 60 minutes. Online check-in has completely transformed their registration process. “The front desk staff loves online check-in; they can register a patient in two seconds versus the 75,000 steps they had to do before,” Drissel said.
Brannen noted what one of the front desk staff members shared about DocuTAP, “It’s perfect, user friendly, easy to maneuver, and has fast input. I figure out things I didn’t even know. The best way to describe it is perfect. I love it!” Brannen appreciates the intuitiveness of the system too, saying “it thinks before the billing staff thinks.”
Owl Now transitioned all its patient charting from paper to electronic input in less than one week. This was an important feat, considering Owl Now’s experiences with previous EMRs. Drissel noted the user friendliness of charting because of the templates. She can finalize 60 patient charts within 15 minutes of closing time, which she says is “phenomenal”. This was opposed to staying late for an hour and a half on average to chart at the end of her work shifts.
“Our paper charts were horrific. There was no room to write out information for multiple complaints or accurately document complex cases. And I had to handwrite all my procedure notes. DocuTAP has saved me a lot of pen ink.” Drissel added. DocuTAP, she says, is the most efficient EMR she has worked with. “I can document an ear infection in three minutes. Most patients with procedures can be documented in under five minutes,” Drissel continues.
In the end, Drissel says moving to DocuTAP was “one of the smoothest transitions” she has seen in her 10 year career in the ER and urgent care setting.
Software Mobility & Configurability
The ability to configure the system to their specific needs has been a bonus for Owl Now. Since they see a large percentage of pediatric
patients, the power to change templates on a per provider (or per clinic) basis, means their documentation finally includes all the required information they need digitally—and paper supplements are no longer needed.
In addition, with modifiable occupational medicine protocols within DocuTAP, Owl Now easily stays on top of specific needs required by individual employers. They can create a template for each company and use it for each occupational medicine patient visit. “[DocuTAP] takes out the guesswork so we don’t have to keep track of all the different details that the different companies require,” said Brannen.
Staff also notes how the mobility of DocuTAP helps their practice. Using tablets to document means clinicians can walk around the clinic with charts in hand and finish documenting whenever (and wherever) it is most convenient. This has resulted in charts being complete when the doors close.
Customer Service & On-going Training
Owl Now quickly realized that DocuTAP software was ideal for their practice’s needs, but they are even more delighted with the personal customer service they’ve received.
Brannen shares, “We just fell in love with the people. The staff at DocuTAP is the most amazing staff we have ever worked with. We feel like we personally know them, and they are at our disposal for any questions we have or any help we need.” Drissel added that all tech support requests have been answered and resolved within 24-48 hours.
Owl Now also has a dedicated Client Success Manager (CSM) at DocuTAP. This is their main point of contact at DocuTAP if they have any immediate questions. Their CSM, Erik Nyhaug, said, “I enjoyed meeting the Owl Now staff at the DocuTAP User Group. They are very invested in making their clinics a success—and are doing all the right things to make sure that happens.”
Staffing Efficiencies & Revenue Gains
Owl Now’s former dependence on paper, even though they were using other EMRs, has been virtually eliminated. Using DocuTAP, they happily report their intake forms during registration have been cut from five pages down to one page. Also, Owl Now will save thousands of dollars a year in prescription paper costs by using ePrescribing through DocuTAP.
Owl Now’s billing is now directly connected to patient charts and front desk registration. Staff can input patient data once—and track all changes across both the practice manager and the EMR. The billing portion of the practice manager is intuitive and has automated coding and billing practices for the staff. Brannen says the efficiency of the software has meant they’ve been able to keep their billing staff lean—and save hundreds of thousands in staffing costs over the next few years.
“From the front desk, to the clinical staff, to billing, it’s so easy to use. Everybody was doing fine with it within a week, and we haven’t heard anything negative from anybody. The staff likes using the tablets, and everything looks so professional when we print stuff, such as discharge instructions,” Brannen summarizes.
Owl Now plans to expand in the coming years, adding urgent care services at one of its sister clinics, which currently specializes in primary care. Brannen concludes, “Our plans are to grow. Our medical group was started by physicians—and we’re now up to 170 employees across all our locations [within the medical group]. But we are like family here with many long-term employees. That’s why we love DocuTAP and the people so much. We share a similar story. We’re excited to grow with DocuTAP.”
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