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Electronic Signatures Accelerate Digital Transformation from Paper to Paperless

How Electronic Signatures Improve Patient Experience in Healthcare

Vijith Menon

Health services have undergone a digital transformation in recent years. Today, customers expect better experiences and faster outcomes. The healthcare industry is no different. As a result, healthcare organizations such as hospitals and clinics have decided to implement digital technologies to scale and serve clients better. The COVID-19 pandemic was a catalyst in governments rolling out digital initiatives to transform the sector. For example, the Government of India rolled out the Digital India initiative to streamline healthcare operations and provide services to patients residing in tier II and tier III cities within India. Initiatives such as Digital India need faster access to the internet, the development of easy-to-use frameworks for healthcare organizations, and the effortless maintenance of digital records. As the Government of India puts its best digital foot forward, we can already see the transformations in local hospitals and smoother document workflows.

The digital transformation of healthcare services can change how patients view hospitals and clinics. With outdated systems, almost 95% of patients encounter unpleasant experiences with healthcare organizations. Waiting in long queues at check-in counters, waiting for days for the doctor's report to come in, filling endless forms, delays in patient admissions, etc., are all pain points for patients and healthcare executives alike. Digital transformation fixes all these bottlenecks. As a result, healthcare organizations have begun implementing healthcare information management (HIM) systems, electronic health records (EHRs), electronic signatures or eSignatures, and other technologies to create a patient-centric approach. This helps build trust and loyalty and delivers a superior patient experience.

Investors are looking for healthcare organizations willing to innovate and experiment with new
ways of providing healthcare to patients. -

Benefits of Digital Transformation for Healthcare Providers

  • Reduced Inefficiencies – Healthcare providers have experienced high efficiency and productivity among their staff since adopting digital technologies. Patients can make online appointments and reduce the chances of no-shows.

  • Reduced Costs – Healthcare providers have integrated HIMs to prevent outsourcing services to a third party and save on costs. This has also managed to curb the spending costs of patients by digitizing their records and medical history.

  • Access to Health Information – Healthcare organizations are able to provide better access to health information, helping physicians diagnose illnesses based on medical history while offering quality patient care.

  • Improved Quality of Care Services – Healthcare providers can offer video calls to interact with patients and improve the quality of care, reducing the risk to physicians' health from direct contact with infected patients.

The impact of digital transformation in healthcare is significant. It has resulted in health records and prescriptions becoming digitized. With a focus on reducing the volume of paperwork in various administrative processes, healthcare providers are eyeing eSignatures as a viable solution to cut down on workflow redundancies.

Uses of Electronic Signatures in Healthcare Organizations

Electronic signatures assist organizations in the healthcare sector in signing various documents. Some of its uses are:

  • Patient Test Results
  • Patient test results or reports must be signed by the presiding physicians. eSignatures accelerate the process and minimize the use of paper, allowing for the instant release of reports instead of waiting for them to be signed.

  • Hospital Admission Forms
  • No matter the organization's size, relatives or patients must fill in hospital admission forms at the time of admission. This time-consuming activity leads to frustration. With eSignatures, this workflow can be fully digitized, ensuring that the patient and their family can get treatment in the shortest possible time.

  • Patient Consent Forms
  • Patients undergoing new procedures or treatments must sign consent forms. Hospitals can gain their consent faster through eSignatures.

  • Professional Liability Policies
  • Medical personnel utilize professional liability policies to cover damages against unforeseen events. Doctors can settle patient claims of medical malpractice by signing insurance policies using online signatures in minutes.

  • Legal Communications
  • Management within healthcare organizations can use electronic signatures on any vital internal communications to convey information to healthcare personnel.

  • Contracts
  • Hiring or Vendor contracts with medical staff and vendors can be digitized and signed using electronic signatures. Online signatures make it possible to hire in bulk, with the entire process being streamlined. Moreover, hospitals can renew contracts with vendors to attain timely supplies using eSignatures.

72% of HCO managers believe “digital customer engagement is only going to become more important to their organization.”

How Electronic Signatures Provide Value to Healthcare Organizations

Did you know that healthcare executives, including physicians and doctors, waste two-thirds of their time doing paperwork? Especially since the pandemic, it has become overwhelming with a growing number of patients, heavily understaffed medical facilities, and challenges in saving all this data.

A study has confirmed that the amount of paperwork doctors manage can sometimes surpass the time they spend with patients. For example, doctors spend 27% of their time seeing patients in their offices, whereas almost 50% of their time is wasted on paperwork. Even when physicians examine patients, they spend only 52.9% of their time with them and 37% on paperwork.

Considering medical insurance forms, claims, and the time spent filling these forms, this can increase even further.

Using an eSignature solution, healthcare organizations can speed up the collection of consent forms and other documents. That is not all!

Here are the core advantages of using electronic signatures in the healthcare industry:

  • Saves Cost and Time: Electronic signatures save expenses on printing, scanning, and sending physical documents. They enable organizations to streamline patient intake, consent forms, and back-office contracts, allowing them to scale while keeping overhead costs low.

  • Encourages Collaboration: Electronic signatures help physicians access patients' EHRs and collaborate with their peers for a faster diagnosis and superior patient care.

  • Minimize Human Errors : eSignatures can minimize errors considerably by shifting all patient records and other billable information to a digitized format. It can also eliminate bottlenecks in the process.

  • Improves Efficiency: Electronic signatures help healthcare executives to be more efficient, streamlined, and fast when helping patients. Improving the efficiency of healthcare staff ensures that your patients, and not paperwork, remain the priority.

Also Read: eSignatures: Positively Transforming Customer Experience in the Hospitality Sector

The Role of DrySign

DrySign, a trustworthy and reliable electronic signature solution provider, can help improve healthcare workflows.

  • Bulk Sending of Documents
  • DrySign allows hospital administrators to send patient forms instantly for signing, enabling them to reach out to the maximum number of patients while reducing wait times.

  • Advanced Security
  • DrySign protects sensitive documents by offering security methods such as two-factor authentication (2FA), one-time password (OTP), password protection, etc., to prevent unauthorized access.

  • Complete Transparency
  • DrySign provides a clear real-time mail trail of every document and every individual signatory. It is easy to track modifications to patient information and allows several specialist doctors to collaborate and give the best healthcare to every patient.

  • Keep Healthcare Workflows Moving
  • Hospital administrators can use DrySign to collect signatures from patients even before they arrive at the hospital. In the case of emergencies, this can be all the difference between life and death.

  • Ensures Compliance
  • DrySign complies with major electronic signature laws worldwide. In India, compliance with the IT Act of 2000 and eMudhra certification ensures that all stakeholders and signatories are legally covered.

  • Simplifying Hiring of Healthcare Personnel
  • Although eSignatures provide a smooth patient experience, they are also an imperative tool for instant hiring and onboarding. After the pandemic, organizations have realized the importance of quick hiring and instant absorption as needed.

  • Be Paperless
  • DrySign helps hospital administrators adopt a paperless and sustainable signature process. Notifications are sent to patients in case they have viewed documents. In addition, reminders are sent to recipients to avoid delays in signing, reducing any redundancies in the paperwork.

Closing Thoughts

Electronic signatures have helped healthcare providers cut operational costs, improve efficiency, save time, and focus on core tasks. With many healthcare organizations looking to be patient-centric, eSignatures are an excellent strategy. For healthcare organizations looking to provide a superior patient experience, DrySign can help build trust.

Source: cms.gov | cdc.gov | ama-assn.org | financesonline.com

DISCLAIMER: The information on this site is for general information purposes only and is not intended to serve as legal advice. Laws governing the subject matter may change quickly, and Exela cannot guarantee that all the information on this site is current or correct. Should you have specific legal questions about any of the information on this site, you should consult with a licensed attorney in your area.

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