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          4 min read

          10 alternatives to fax and paper in the healthcare environment

          Featured Image

          The overuse of faxes in the healthcare network has been decried for many years, particularly because of the time and data losses incurred by handling paper.

          Part of the problem is being addressed by the various levels of government, which are working on numerous digital health pilot projects. However, these projects will not be able to replace all paper processes, which exist in too great a quantity and variety to be handled with a wall-to-wall approach. What other alternatives to fax and paper can healthcare institutions implement now to modernize their processes and optimize the use of their resources?

          Here is a selection of 10 digital solutions from Quebec and Canada that can help modernize administrative processes and increase the performance of healthcare institutions.

          1. Novari eRequest (Novari)
            Sending the required documents to refer to a medical specialist

          2. Myle (Medfar)
            Management of patient records and document signatures

          3. Electronic Document Management (Logibec)
            → Collection, organization and dissemination of clinical information

          4. PandaWebRX (CGSI Solutions)
            → Production and management of medication administration records (MARs)

          5. PrescribeIT (Canada Health Infoway + Telus Health)
            → Sending prescriptions to pharmacies

          6. Orchestrator Platform - Clinical Capacity Management (Petal)
            → Production and dissemination of medical schedule information

          7. eClinibase (Logibec)
            → Transmission of consultation, examination and results requests

          8. Turf
            → Sending the required documents to refer to a medical specialist

          9. SeamlessMD
            → Sending of documents required for post-operative follow-ups

          10. Xacte
            → Transmission of information required for billing to RAMQ


          1. Novari eRequest (Novari)  

            The Novari eRequest solution automates the process of sending and receiving documents that specialists must have on hand before consulting for a referred patient. It can be used both by the doctors themselves and by the administrative staff of hospitals and clinics. By replacing the use of faxes in this process, healthcare personnel can gain better visibility and additional data on the care pathway. The solution also allows for the computerization of waiting lists.

            Novari Health

            Modernized paper process: Sending documents required to refer patients to medical specialists.


          2. Myle (Medfar)  

            Myle is one of several electronic medical records solutions (EMRs) available on the market, which means it can significantly reduce the amount of paper used to create and track patient records. Today, few frontline healthcare facilities are equipped with an EMR, but Myle adds a fax-web feature that allows prescriptions, requests and forms to be signed and transmitted electronically, further reducing fax usage in the network. 


            Modernized paper process:
            Management of patient records and signature of various documents traditionally sent by fax.


          3. Electronic Document Management (Logibec)  

            Electronic Document Management (EDM) allows for the creation of intelligent forms and the centralization of document management in order to computerize the transmission and storage of clinical information. The high level of interoperability and flexibility of the configurations allows the solution to meet the needs of all types of healthcare institutions (hospitals, CLSCs, CHSLDs, etc.). The hospitalization summary sheet, for example, can be filled out and distributed without using any paper. The result is access to better quality data and faster patient management.


            Modernized paper process:
            Collection, organization and dissemination of clinical patient information.


          4. PandaWebRX (CGSI Solutions)  

            The PandaWebRX software package offers an electronic medication administration record (MAR) and a prescriber-advisor tool. Designed for hospital care and residential and long-term care centers (CHSLD), it allows nurses, for example, to avoid having to manually validate paper files related to the administration of medication to patients and thus spend more time with them. Depending on the patient's preferences, it is of course possible to print the prescriptions.


            Modernized paper process:
            Production and management of medication administration orders.


          5. PrescribeIT (Canada Health Infoway + Telus Health)   

            Developed in collaboration with Telus Health, PrescribeIT is a solution offered by Canada Health Infoway that allows office-based prescribers and community pharmacies to transmit prescriptions from their electronic medical record (EMR). In addition to eliminating the need for paper prescriptions and faxing, the solution provides patients with the assurance that their prescription has been received by the pharmacy.

            It should be noted that PrescribeIT is available in some Canadian provinces, but not yet in Quebec, where an equivalent will possibly be developed under a different name.


            Modernized paper process:
            Sending prescriptions to the patient's chosen pharmacy management system.


          6. Orchestrator Platform – Clinical Capacity Management (Petal)  

            The Clinical Capacity Management solution is a component of Petal's Orchestrator Platform that helps eliminate paper in the process of collecting and distributing medical schedule information. For example, the on-call list can be generated in real-time from the schedules of the various departments, without the need for a fax. Departmental schedule changes, which are traditionally communicated on paper, are transmitted instantly to provide a real-time view of clinical activity.

            Peta logo

            Modernized paper process:
            Production and dissemination of clinical and on-call schedule information.


          7. eClinibase (Logibec)  

            Comprised of several modules, the eClinibase solution can be integrated with the Computerized Forms Routing and Inquiry Tracking Service (SAFIR) to replace faxes sent to request consultations or tests. Once the care has been provided, the solution also replaces the traditional fax sent to transmit the results to the facility that initially requested the care.


            Modernized paper process:
            Transmission of consultation and review requests, as well as results.


          8. Turf

            Turf is a new mobile application designed in Quebec that allows Quebec physicians to refer patients and communicate with each other. The project was initiated in 2020 by Dr. Alexandre Bouchard and Dr. François Letarte with the goal of modernizing the patient referral and follow-up process. The application is currently available on iOS and includes physicians from 32 different specialties.


            Modernized paper process:
            Sending required documents to refer patients to medical specialists.


          9. SeamlessMD

            Funded by MEDTEQ and Anges Québec, SeamlessMD is a mobile application that allows patients to follow instructions and view information about their surgery at any time, without paper. The data collected and the results of the surgery can then be transmitted to the requesting jurisdictions entirely electronically, without the need for a fax.


            Modernized paper process:
            Sending required documents to refer patients to medical specialists.


          10. Xacte

            Xacte offers a secure alternative to the traditional medical billing process of sending paper documents to a billing agency. Rather than manually copying medical procedures into their computer system, billing agents have direct access to the data, which is captured and transmitted electronically. No physical documents need to be scanned or mailed.


            Modernized paper process:
            Transmission of information and other paper documents required to bill care services to RAMQ.



          Moving away from fax and paper

          Most healthcare organizations agree that they would benefit from modernizing the majority of their paper-based processes in order to be more efficient and better serve patients. To do so, however, it's important to understand why faxing is so stubbornly entrenched. With this in mind, we invite you to read our article Why is it so difficult to eliminate the use of the fax machine in healthcare?.

          Once the challenges of modernizing paper processes are understood, it is advisable to go step by step. The quantity and variety of paper processes are too great to hope to get rid of them all at once.


          Select a process and take action

          The 10 alternatives to fax and paper listed here are just a few of the hundreds of solutions available on the market that have been designed to improve the performance of the healthcare network.

          Our team will be happy to assist you in modernizing your paper-based process specifically for the collection and dissemination of clinical information by implementing the intelligent electronic forms of Electronic Document Management (EDM). You can start the process now by requesting a demonstration.

          Together, let's work to modernize the healthcare system to make it more efficient and enjoyable for staff and patients!

          Are you a Canadian digital health company offering a solution that replaces fax or paper-based processes? Don't hesitate to write to us and we may add you to the list at a future update.

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