From Document Management To DICOM - The evolution Of Enterprise Content Management

Wednesday, 18 May, 2016

Enterprise Content Management (ECM) started as a departmental document management solution in administrative and financial departments. What was initially referred to as “imaging and document management,” ECM concentrated on scanning and electronically storing paper content to help departments reduce storage costs and recover valuable space. Over time, it grew to include workflows, business process management and case management capabilities that help to accelerate business processes, saving time and resources.

ECM has made tremendous strides in the past ten years, yet in many cases, it remains invisible to those who use it every day. Today’s ECM solutions store both clinical content and a large proportion of administrative and financial content in electronic clinical repository systems making it the single most central content repository in a healthcare organisation.
However, it’s still a familiar sight to see medical office staff hand a patient a clipboard of forms. It’s not very common though for patients to receive a mobile tablet device that contains electronic versions of all of the relevant forms they need to review, complete and sign. Increasingly, these devices are able to deliver content that auto fills the forms with the patient information that’s already on file, so patients do not have to input redundant information, making for a better experience. And, because ECM electronically captures the content, complete and accurate patient information is instantly available.
Patients today are able to benefit from clinical content repository systems which streamline the entire registration process as well as downstream processes, like billing. This clinical content strategy is essential to the health data continuum, providing healthcare organisations with the roadmap to improved patient care.
Beyond administrative data, ECM technology has grown to include clinical content like lab results, wound care photos, electrocardiograms and more. By integrating this content into the clinical content repository system, clinicians can quickly and easily access it without switching between applications. For administrative departments, integrating ECM with enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems allows staff to remain in the ERP system while accessing related information to complete tasks. As the volume of content continues to grow and the need for a central repository becomes increasingly more important, integrations with other core business systems continue to be a cornerstone of ECM solutions to support accessibility, security and patient care.
hylandToday, ECM continues to evolve. Among the newest developments is the ability to capture and store Digital Imaging and Communications in Medicine (DICOM) content, like X-rays, MRIs and CT scans. ECM’s capability to ingest and manage these images rounds out the solution’s effectiveness to provide healthcare organisations with a comprehensive clinical content strategy.
Serving as an enterprise-wide platform, ECM connects numerous IT systems and departments across the organisation. While this true enterprise solution captures, stores and automates processes across financial, administrative and clinical departments, it is ECM’s health information exchange capability that users are finding most exciting.
hyland1Now, when there is a transition of care, patient content is simultaneously sent to the new organisation electronically. Transporting records no longer falls to the patient and clinicians no longer need to start from scratch to manually construct a collection of patient data. This clinical content strategy is essential to the health data continuum, providing healthcare organisations with the roadmap to improved patient care.
ECM has come a long way from its roots in document management. The scan-store-retrieve model, which helped eliminate file cabinets and repurpose physical space, has grown into a core, enterprise solution. Creating more complete patient records, ECM serves as a single point of access for clinical content, ensuring the right providers have the right information, at the right time and in the right context, resulting in more effective patient care.
ECM also creates more complete administrative records, enabling providers to take advantage of case and business process management tools to become more efficient and lower costs.
Susan deCathelineau, vice president of healthcare sales and service, Hyland, creator of OnBase
hyland-logoFor more information about OnBase for healthcare visit or call +61 2 8249 4560
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