Order entry can be an involved process for manufacturers of durable medical equipment (DME). In addition to order intake processes that are standard across industries, DME companies must manage a whole additional set of steps involved in preauthorization so patients are approved for insurance coverage where applicable. Then, there are other processes involved after an order is initiated, including billing, routing, and fulfillment.
DME providers know accuracy is key throughout all these aspects of facilitating medical equipment sales, but achieving that can make for a lengthy process, which:
- Entails a lot of manual paperwork
- Frustrates employees or necessitates hiring an order entry specialist
- Results in a slow revenue cycle
- Leaves customers waiting too long for their devices
Let’s see how you can expedite your approach to order entry while improving accuracy, efficiency, customer satisfaction, and the employee experience.
1. Leverage simple automation for digitizing order information.
A major way DME providers can improve their process and streamline as much as possible is through automation. With simple automation technology such as optical character recognition (OCR), you can eliminate the work of manually looking through documents to find relevant information to enter into your order entry system, such as a patient’s address or healthcare test scores. Instead, the system can digitize the text for you, making finding this information as quick and easy as performing a simple keyword search.
OCR has come a long way from its humble origins several decades ago. Today, this technology can digitize text with an impressive level of precision, making it a valuable solution for any paper order forms or scanned PDFs that would otherwise require painstaking manual processing.
If you’re working with structured digital forms, you could employ another type of automation: order entry software or order management software (OMS). Forrester projects that the global market for this software will grow to reach a value of $1.9 billion in 2026. These OMS solutions can automatically feed the right data into the right places, including routing, inventory tracking, and billing departments, moving sales forward in less time and with less manual work.
2. Accept analog ordering methods, and focus on efficiency on the backend.
Some DME providers try funneling orders through an online portal in an effort to eliminate the complexities and data entry requirements that come with processing orders that are sent via fax, mail, phone call, or email. Unfortunately, these portals may feel less familiar to users than traditional order methods, so they may have limited adoption rates, leaving a large portion of orders still requiring manual entry.
Considering that 89 percent of healthcare organizations still use fax, it will likely continue to be a staple of medical communications. The solution here is not to spend extra time pushing an online ordering system on customers. Instead, DME suppliers should recognize the reality that traditional order methods will be a large part of the equation for the foreseeable future.
By allowing customers to order in a familiar way and standardizing the way orders are processed on the backend, you can find ways to keep the process efficient and expeditious while also keeping customers happy. This flexible approach eliminates time spent training customers on new portals, troubleshooting, or following up to fill in missing information.
3. Take automation a step further with intelligent data extraction.
Today, companies are no longer limited to simple automation. You can make automation do even more for you by taking it a step further with a solution such as Notable Systems.
Rather than just digitizing paper order forms and faxed medical records, this solution can use artificial intelligence to “understand” those documents and pull out the data that’s most relevant to you. It can even enter that data directly into your order entry system.
For example, if you need to know whether a certain preexisting condition is present in a patient’s health history or what score they got on a sleep test, the system can quickly identify these data points in even the densest documents and deliver them on an easy-to-read indexed cover page, eliminating the need for manual or keyword searching.
You can also use this technology to find information such as a customer’s ZIP code and automatically route orders accordingly. The applications are endless, allowing companies to tailor the solution to their needs and directly address bottlenecks that are currently slowing down their order entry process.
Expedite order entry through intelligent automation that works for you.
Through intelligent automation, you can eliminate much of the manual work that slows down your order entry process. The result is a streamlined, efficient approach to managing orders, resulting in:
- Less tedious manual work for your team
- Lower labor costs for your company
- An accelerated revenue cycle with fewer billing errors
- Faster delivery times
- Higher customer satisfaction
Notable Systems has extensive experience in the DME space and has helped other companies revolutionize their approach to medical equipment sales. To learn more about how this solution could help you expedite order entry, schedule a consultation!