Monday, July 5, 2010

Texnology? -- Technology at Texas Dermatology

Technology invades our lives and our medical practice at Texas Dermatology is no exception. Over the last two years we have been on an aggressive campaign to upgrade our practice to include replacing virtually all of our hardware to create a paperless clinical environment.

We use a "cloud based" web software environment to handle all aspects of the clinical encounter from scheduling, checking on insurance eligibility, recording information in an electronic health record, and billing. It surprises many patients to learn that we use data centers all over the world to help us sort and keep track of clinical information. This allows us to rapidly, securely, and accurately file the thousands of pieces of data that are received by our practice every day.

One of the things I'm most proud of is our electronic prescribing rate. We only hand write a handful of prescriptions every month. Instead we send prescriptions to pharmacies directly which allows for patient convenience (its usually ready when they drive to pick it up!) and safety because we can cross check medications against both allergies and potential drug interactions. Refills are also automated and usually have a turn around time of less than an hour after the patient calls the pharmacy during business hours.

We hope that by the end of the year we will have a patient portal active which will allow patients access to some of their account and clinical information, scheduling, and even to submit and receive answers to their health questions.

So what would be the logical next step? A television studio of course.

Yes, its hard to believe but we have just completed construction of a state of the art broadcast studio in our Dallas office. Located in the "green room", we have lights, cameras, and action! We wouldn't have been able to do this project without the great folks at Dallas-based VideoTech and video genius Daryl Newman. He outfitted us with microphones, two broadcast quality cameras, and multiple cool LED lights -- as well as a some instruction!

But the heart of the system is a device from the San Antonio company NewTech. Its called a Tricaster and is sold as a "studio in a box" and that probably describes it well. We are able to mix multiple video inputs, internet feeds from remote broadcasts like Skype, and even local DVD video to make really cool live or recorded productions.

But probably the most exciting thing the device can do is to create "virtual sets". This is where we can use computer generated graphics to change the look and feel of the studio from a news room type environment to an auditorium for a PowerPoint presentation.

Why did we do this? We think it will add to the mission of our practice in communicating information to our patients and to that of our educational program and residency program.

Stay tuned to our website -- -- for more details as the project unfolds.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Location:Kona, HI

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