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Case Study – Schumacher Group

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The Lafayette, La.-based Schumacher Group, a large multi-state provider of emergency department and hospitalist services, has been using Ingenious Med’s charge capture solution in its hospitalist division since launching that unit in 2006. Currently, Schumacher has 160 hospitalists working at 22 hospitals.

Dr. David Grace, a hospitalist who runs the division, notes that he and his colleagues have a special need for a good mobile charge capture solution, since they’re constantly on the go. A web-based application like Ingenious Med satisfies that requirement, he notes, because hospitalists can access the web from their smartphones, regardless of whether or not a hospital has wireless communications or a high-speed Internet connection. Moreover, they can stay in touch with patient care and enter charges outside the hospital by using the application.

When Grace does clinical rounds, he notes, he often covers for a partner, and he appreciates the ability to leave notes for his colleague on Ingenious Med’s cross-cover sheet. That, plus the instant messaging feature in the program, helps busy hospitalists communicate about particular patients and what they need or the tests that have been ordered for them.

In addition, Grace says that the documentation summary in the program enables him to send key data on diagnoses and procedures, as well as the latest lab results, to the outpatient physicians who will be seeing the patient soon after discharge. Especially for physicians who are not linked to hospital information systems, this is vital data that they could not get any other way unless they waited for the discharge summary to arrive from the hospital.As a manager, Grace also appreciates the business intelligence functions of Ingenious Med. Hospital information systems, he points out, don’t provide accurate data on the performance of individual physicians. But the Ingenious Med charge data can generate reports that enable him to determine the average length of stay or readmission rate for a particular doctor. This helps educate physicians and also provides group-wide data that Grace uses when he meets with hospital executives.

It’s clear that the application has helped physicians improve their documentation and coding. The group’s coding specialists provide instant feedback to the physicians via instant messaging, and the doctors also consult the program’s master coder to check on whether they’re entering the correct E&M codes.

Overall, Grace says, “Ingenious Med is a phenomenal product.” And, unlike some other vendors, he adds, “They heavily support their product.”