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December 3, 2019

Through Digital Document Management, Updox Eliminated One Billion Fax Pages Ahead of CMS’ Call for A Fax-Free Healthcare System By 2020

Updox’s Communication and Document Management Solutions Eliminate Fax Security Risks and Save Time & Money, But Majority of Hospitals Still Rely on Paper-based Fax 

In August 2018, CMS Administrator Seema Verma imagined a bold vision of healthcare that would transform patient care by improving communication and data exchange – with no place left for antiquated fax machines in the future. The head of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services further challenged the industry to make doctors' offices “a fax-free zone by 2020.”    

With 2020 less than a month away, Updox is pleased to report that it has helped more than 420,000 Updox users answer Administrator Verma’s call. In 2019 alone, Updox eliminated almost 300 million fax pages to push healthcare into a fax-free environment and reduce overall paper usage through its electronic fax, direct secure email, document management and inter-office messenger solutions. Updox also supports additional benefits that increase efficiencies and eliminate redundant administrative tasks.

However, more than 9 billion faxes are still sent every year in healthcare, according to DirectTrust, and 30% of tests are ordered due to lost or missing fax communications. In addition, research says fax still accounts for 75% of all medical communication.

“We know healthcare needs a way to exchange information and transfer documents. Ten years ago, we pioneered a way to do it better and give providers a more efficient, secure, paperless way to communicate,” said Michael Morgan, CEO of Updox. “Healthcare providers cling to fax because it’s what they’ve always used. Not only does this cost them time and money, but it frustrates staff and can leave patient information exposed. Updox eliminates the problems that paper causes.”  

In recent years, researchers have discovered security flaws that can leave entire networks vulnerable from malicious faxes. Meanwhile, manual errors can result in protected patient information getting sent to the wrong number, leading to HIPAA violations that cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. 

The Benefits of Going Electronic

With Updox’s electronic document management tools, providers have the opportunity to eliminate waste while saving time and money. On average, providers spend upwards of 55 hours manually faxing every month, and for every 5,000 fax pages sent or received, a practice spends an average of $155 in supplies. Since 2009, Updox has helped providers save approximately 1 billion pages of paper through paperless fax – the equivalent of almost 16,000 trees. 

“We started with document management from Updox as we were looking for the easiest and cheapest way to eliminate paper from our office. We now electronically process more than 20,000 fax pages a month through Updox,” says Luke Anders, who manages IT for a small practice in Atlanta. “We’re saving hundreds on the paper, toner, fax line and shredding expenses that we would have been paying if that was actual paper, let alone the expenses of paying a staff member to scan all those documents into our system to file in charts.” The practice also uses Updox Messenger, an inter-office communications tool to further increase efficiency. 

Across practice size and specialty, redundant work process like fax are a drain on provider productivity and profitability. Prior to Updox, Tom Ryan, MD, of Pediatric Medicine of Cartersville, used to spend an hour or more every evening managing documents, reviewing results or signing off on items. Now, he does that all easily and efficiently during his workday through the Updox collaboration platform, where he can access documents from his computer, tablet or mobile device.

“Going paperless with electronic document management is great. We can review results immediately, drag and drop items to patient charts, sign forms electronically, confirm appointments through text, answer questions quickly and respond to appointment requests. It frees up a lot of time.” 

Efficient Businesses Drive More Effective Care

The security and time- and cost-savings that electronic document management offers is just a first step for healthcare to realize the benefits of more efficient workflows. 

The Updox Collaboration Hub provides one central location to collect and review all practice messages, including faxes, texts, referrals, refill requests, Direct emails, results, reports and more, from one platform without needing to log in or out of different systems throughout the day. Updox also offers Secure Text and Video Chat, to further streamline the ways providers connect with patients and each other.  

“Eliminating paper was just the start for Updox. We’re driven to facilitate stronger, more efficient connections between patients and providers. Just as we’re at the forefront of getting rid of paper, we’re now focused on eradicating phone calls. Phone tag – or that unending process of leaving voice mail after voice mail because no one answers the phone anymore – is just as ineffective and costly as fax,” says Morgan. “In order to engage patients efficiently and give time back to providers and staff who are pushed to do more and more, we have to do things differently. That’s the change Updox is driving for our customers.”

To learn more about Updox and its solutions for a more efficient and effective fax-free healthcare future, visit www.updox.com

About Updox:

Committed to simplifying the business of healthcare, Updox is a single collaboration platform for out-of-hospital healthcare providers. Named for the past five years to the Inc. 5000 list of America's fastest-growing private companies, Updox is integrated with more than 100 electronic health records (EHR) and pharmacy management systems and serves more than 350,000 users and 125 million patients.

Updox offers a broad set of capabilities for patient engagement, provider communications and internal productivity that work together in a secure, easy-to-use collaboration platform. Updox was created specifically for the out-of-hospital market and gives customers access to a growing platform that focuses on solutions and services to make everyone delivering healthcare happy. Learn more at www.updox.com or follow the company on TwitterLinkedIn and Facebook

Topics: patient engagement, press release, electronic fax, efax, healthcare software, healthcare technology