COVID-19 Update: Read our messages to employees and clients

July 04, 2017
Scribe Update

Since the advent of the EHR, medical scribes have been the helping hand to the overworked physician, fed-up with clerical duties that take away precious time from interacting with patients. The perks of using medical scribes in the healthcare setting have been mentioned time and time again. Studies have shown that with the help of medical scribes, healthcare practices can increase productivity and boost revenue by alleviating the clerical burdens of EHR navigation and documentation, thus giving healthcare providers more space and time to see more patients and focus on medical treatment. All of this, in turn, helps to prevent physician burnout, increases both patient and physician satisfaction, and helps to improve the patient-doctor relationship. In the end, if things are efficiently coordinated, the work of the scribe can help to streamline the billing cycle, and keep the momentum of the revenue cycle running at a pace that matches the workload.

In addition to the core benefits of medical scribe use in the healthcare setting, here are a few more points to note about medical scribes, what they can do, and how they are able to do it:

Assist not just document

Although the main role of medical scribes is to accurately document patient exams, it is not the only way in which they help to increase workflow efficiency. Scribes are not just documenters; they can also assist the physician with scheduling reminders, navigating the EHR to find necessary patient information, and arranging communication between different departments on behalf of the physician. In this way, the medical scribe is an active participant in healthcare events whose contributions can have an effect in the long-term (e.g. documentation for post-acute care).

Many options to accommodate patient comfort and privacy

Although many experiences from patients and physicians have noted improvements to the patient-doctor relationship due to the increased focus on patient care and less time at the computer, some still critique the presence of scribes as an intrusion into patient comfort and/or privacy. There are, however, ways to work around some of these aspects by offering different options through which scribes can perform their duties. This can include verbal dictation to the scribe that is present in another room, or telescribing, which involves remote recording through a built-in microphone in the examination room.

Other regulatory details to note

Most importantly, the documented work of the medical scribe must be verified by the practicing physician and signed off by both physician and scribe. Documentation of what was performed by scribe and physician for the entire patient examination must be clearly stated in the EHR. Updating the EHR template to include relevant information about physician and scribes, mandated by CMS, is important, especially in the case of a CMS audit, but also as a means to accurately record who contributed to what.

Nurse Care Team Assistants
While nurses comprise the largest healthcare workforce, many suffer in silence from burnout and decreased job satisfaction. Our Nurse CTAs combat burnout with strategic support. From documenting patient encounters to monitoring vital signs, CTAs ensure nurses work top-of-license. CTAs close critical gaps in the care continuum and provide nurses with the added bandwidth to focus on critical care.

TeleScribe Services
Providers with limited space or in need of increased privacy on behalf of their patients have valuable documentation support through our real-time video TeleScribe program. Healthcare sites in rural settings also benefit from our unrivaled offsite resource for optimized efficiency and tackling administrative burdens.

Care Team Assistants
Our team of experts have developed innovative strategies from the industry insights gained from nearly two decades of healtchare leadership to improve care team performance. A tailored, next-generation CTA Program extends your ability to support patients throughout their care journey.

Care Navigators
As healthcare business models evolve, so should care teams. Patients who are paired with Care Navigators report feeling less anxiety, and an increased ability to self-manage their conditions between visits. And providers report increased job satisfaction from improved efficiency, and knowing their patients have access to care teams, and strategic support.

Scribe Services
There’s a reason why we’re the nation’s most frequently used scribe company: we offer professionally trained in-person and virtual medical scribes to meet the specific needs of our clients. We offer a variety of scribe programs, as well as technology and personnel solutions that address revenue cycle management, the transition to value-based care, and more through our HealthChannels family of companies.

Artificial Intelligence
Our advanced AI solutions tackle complex documentation challenges to reduce the administrative burden preventing doctors from delivering precision care. We'll guide you through the best practices for incorporating AI into your workflow. Gain visibility into your data with enhanced analytics driven by AI and CTAs.