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Card scanners or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Ditch the Copier

If you own or work at a medical practice, chances are you’ve got a point of admissions area or reception desk. Hopefully, you’ve hired a friendly face who greets patients and clients with a smile and helpful expediency. They make them feel at ease. Maybe they offer coffee and a welcoming assurance that someone will be with them shortly.

But how often does your receptionist (or as we like to call them, “Director of First Impressions”) say something like:

“Give me just a second. I need to go make a copy of your insurance card.”

Be honest.

If so, your practice is missing a key component of a positive patient experience. After all, patients are paying to be there. Oftentimes they’re nervous. They want personal, specialized attention from the moment they walk in the door. And they deserve it.

But don’t worry. There’s a simple cure. And it has nothing to do with the cloud, tablet computing or any sort of mobile app trickery.

Pure and simple, what your practice needs is a card scanner. It’s a compact little device that captures images quickly, clearly and at the point of admissions.

Now, we’ll be the first to admit: Card scanners aren’t an ultra-glamorous piece of technology. They don’t come equipped with LED screens or near field communication. But they do one thing, and they do it very, very well. One stapler-sized device helps streamline your check-in process and gets valuable information where it needs to be. It represents another valuable piece in the complete document management solution.

Because they’re so small (about 8″x2.5″), card scanners sit comfortably on even the most crowded desk, and they easily interface with network scanning software like ScanLink® Pro to get clear images of ID and insurance cards into EMR or practice management software. And with network scanning, multiple users can scan into the system simultaneously, which is a whole lot more efficient than waiting in line at the copier. That’s what we like to call «meaningful use.»

And your receptionist (or «Chief Executive of Patient Experience», whichever you prefer), can do what they do best, without having to head to the back to visit the copier.