DocStar Enterprise Content Management (ECM) is the right prescription for a successful pharmacy and HME company to reap significant savings and enhance efficiency, quality and customer service throughout their corporation.
Customer: Boone Drugs, Inc.
Industry: Healthcare – Pharmacy
Business Solution: DocStar ECM Document Management Software
Improve workflow and efficiency throughout HME, Respiratory, Human Resources and Accounts Payable.
Established in 1919, Boone Drug has been serving western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee with quality service and reliable prescriptions for nearly a century. Boone has become one of the fastest growing and successful pharmacies and home medical equipment providers in North Carolina, with 17 stores serving 15 counties and more than 200 employees. They are an authority in pharmaceutical sales and offer hard to find services such as oxygen services and BHRT hormone replacement therapy.
Despite the company’s dramatic growth, the original store still thrives in downtown Boone, with an old time soda fountain and grill, household and rustic gift items, the aroma of home-cooked food, and kind words from strangers that make for a rare experience these days.
Kim Cooper, Boone’s accreditation coordinator, has multiple responsibilities, including keeping Boone stores accredited to comply with stringent Medicare regulations. She also supports and maintains all the company’s home medical equipment billing software and VoIP phone systems, and maintains the computers in several departments. Kim has been working with DocStar ECM since October 2011.
“Prior to signing on with DocStar, I talked with three companies,” Kim says. “The other two essentially offered only HME (Home Medical Equipment) document management systems. We chose the solution primarily because their system was versatile and flexible enough to help improve our efficiency, quality and performance throughout our corporation.”
Before DocStar ECM, Boone staff wasted significant time looking for documents, often with several people involved in searching for paper which might never be found. “In our Respiratory Department, our staff would spend 20 to 25 minutes of paid company time combing various offices for documents, and would do this several times a day,” she says. “We’d spend lots of time talking to doctors asking them to re-fax documents because we couldn’t find them. Things were routinely getting misfiled. I just kept thinking, there’s got to be a better way to do this.”
Once the system was implemented, it was successfully integrated into multiple departments at Boone Drug, saving the company valuable time and money in HME, respiratory, HR and accounts payable. “We performed 3,500 immunizations in the last year, and access to electronic records in DocStar ECM has been a tremendous help to us in responding to patient requests for documentation support,” Kim says.
Kim also praises the unique search function in the solution, which isn’t organized in folders like other solutions, and permits more detailed, layered searches that locate documents much more quickly and easily. “With other systems, we could only search for one thing, like patient name, but with DocStar ECM, we can search documents using multiple criteria. Considering the amount of data we have and the many different areas we serve, we feel the DocStar solution is a much better fit for our company.”
“We probably have 25 Boone employees using the system regularly now, and we’ve definitely seen a reduction in the number of documents we have to copy,” Kim adds. “And because our people are spending less time searching for paper documents, they can spend more time serving our patients and communicating with physicians.”
From HME to respiratory, DocStar ECM has helped us improve workflow and expedite billing throughout the Boone organization. “Prior to the implementation, patient charts would sit on a billers’ desks, respiratory therapists would pick them up and the billers might not see them again for six months. Now, because everything’s electronic, respiratory therapists don’t need to interact with our billers anymore and everything gets billed much faster.”
Boone used to receive dozens of customer service calls each day and would need to pull paper documents for roughly 60-70% of those calls, keeping customers on hold and often tying up several employees in the search. Now they pull documents for far fewer customer calls and can access all patient information for the past five years in about 10 seconds.
Kim estimates her company is saving roughly $75,000 annually in processing expenses since implementing DocStar ECM. Boone has also eliminated about 50 file cabinets previously used for long-term document storage, which translates to approximately $145,000 annually in hardware, space, supplies and labor cost savings.
“DocStar ECM has made a huge difference with our audits, particularly our annual 401K plan audits. Now all we have to do is sit the auditors down at computers and tell them what information to enter; then they just hit a button and instantly have everything they need at their fingertips. Our HR manager says he can’t believe how much less stressful this process is than before the implementation, when he’d spend two solid days pulling and copying paper docs,” notes Kim.
More efficient audits are saving Boone Drug roughly an additional $15,000 a year, for total annual cost savings generated by DocStar ECM approaching a quarter of a million dollars.
Boone is also gearing up to expand DocStar ECM into other areas. “Our Diabetic Center is a centralized location for all diabetes supplies dispensed through our company and will be on the system within six months, which will be very convenient,” Kim comments. “In the long term, every one of our stores will be scanning their invoices into DocStar ECM instead of using company couriers to transport them. This will be a lot faster and will eliminate the risk of losing or misreading paper envelopes.” Electronically accessing documents also impacts the bottom line by eliminating courier expenses.
“For me, the top benefits are ease of document retrieval, ease of access between our stores, and the technical support. The DocStar team is friendly, they’re helpful, and they always call back. I’ve had them on the phone for more than an hour, and they never get frustrated with me. They’re just great,” Kim adds.
“DocStar ECM has done exactly what I wanted it to do, and I love that we’re just able to easily expand into so many different areas. We keep finding more material we’re going to be able to put into the system. It’s just amazing.”