• The Gist: Medical records reviewers need to weigh the advantages or disadvantages of having records off-site or on-site. Records reviewers tire of the lifting, hauling, storage and expense of records. While some people fear lax internet security, on-site records can be stolen or destroyed as well.
© The Medical-Legal News 2007
By Dan Clifford, publisher
Attorneys, medical experts, LNCs and other medical professionals faced with taming the paper tiger may now have relief.
SmartCase, a new company that is a partner operation of Litigation Management Inc., the parent company of Medicine for the Defense, offers complete medical record scanning and management.
Benefits of the new service, in addition to paperless management of medical records, are access to one’s cases and their files from any location, and HIPAA-compliant security.
When a new case arrives at the door of the medical-legal professional, the paper files or the electronic files are sent to SmartCase. The cost of scanning paper records by SmartCase is 18 cents per page. The pages are “Bates” stamped.
Carey Marousek, president of SmartCase, explained, “Once the documents are imaged, the user can pull up the documents in one part of the computer screen and the SmartCase database in another part of the screen.” The user then creates the work product.
The database can link to individual pages, though the ability to link to, and highlight a tiny portion of, an imaged page is not yet available.
Marousek explained that the SmartCase database is completely web based, and that no special software is needed on the user’s computer.
Programs such as CaseMap and Legal Nurse Systems reside on the user’s PC, by comparison.
When asked about customers, Marousek explained that the company was just launched in January.
Marousek was asked about technical requirements for using SmartCase, and felt confident that SmartCase could be used by customers with satellite-based internet access, unlike Medicine for the Defense, which requires DSL only. Marousek pointed out that use of SmartCase would be nearly impossible with dial-up.
When asked about storage space, Marousek said, “Storage is relatively cheap, so it is pretty open for SmartCaseone and SmartCasepro customers.
SmartCaseone is the single-user package and costs $780 per year for a user to license. SmartCasepro is geared to multi-user offices. Free limited technical support is offered for both products — two hours per year for SmartCaseone and six hours per year for SmartCasepro.
Marousek said that the SmartCase copying system is the “best in the business,” ensuring quality copies.
“As far as I know, we are the first web-based application doing this. It has similarities to CaseMap. In the future we are adding a more robust component for record acquisition tracking,” Marousek said. She explained that law firms and records professionals need a tool to track calls and letters that bring in the records.
“We are also developing a tool to interface between SmartCase and other systems,” Marousek added.
Marousek noted that the data of SmartCase and the data of Medicine for the Defense reside on separate platforms.
Rosie Oldham, a nurse consultant and owner of R&G Medical Consultants, said, “We have been developing our [medical record management software] for seven years. If you added it all up, we have invested over $200,000, which gives you an idea of what this entails. For the LNCs who do not have that kind of money… I think LMI has a nice package.” Oldham emphasized that she had not reviewed the SmartCase product in depth.
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