Management of external faxes

by asaccoccio asaccoccio (New) New

Hello all - I'm hoping that this is the right place for this post. I appreciate any and all input.

I'm an NP at an outpatient specialty practice. It's an excellent group, but we could really benefit from some improvement in certain areas. My biggest beast to tackle is management of our external faxes. We use Faxcom which is an application that receives external labs, imaging, referral requests, prior auth requests, etc. This is separate from our medical records systems. 

We have an employee who works in our call center who sifts through incoming faxes in Faxcom and directs them to the proper folder. For example, referral requests go to New Patient Referral folder which another employee in charts of scheduling new patients takes care of. 

We have 4 NPs at this practice, including myself. 2 full-time and 2 part-time. In addition to seeing patients, helping triage nurses with calls, and managing internal results, we are responsible for the following documents received in Faxcom:

- External imaging results (ordered by all physicians/providers in this practice)

- Order requests for upcoming imaging appointments (some of which have already been faxed to these facilities - something I'm also working on is eliminating redundancies like this)

- Notification of radiology center's inability to contact patient for ordered imaging

- Pharmacy refill requests

- Pharmacy non-compliance or interaction alerts

- Pathology reports

- Lab results

- Misc reports that mistakenly are transferred into our folders

Some of these are appropriately allotted to our APRNs, but I believe others could be managed by ancillary staff so that we are left with more time for direct patient care or management of results. 

Once we review these documents we drag them to a Scanning folder. An employee then routinely prints each of these documents. She sends the documents in Faxcom that have been printed to delete folder. The printed documents are then physically scanned into the patient's electronic medical record.

My questions are:

- How do you manage external faxes at your practice?

- Are documents reviewed in grouped pools or are then received and then sent directly to the ordering provider?

- How do you use medical assistants, secretaries, RNs, or NPs in management of incoming faxes?

- Do you have any recommendations for streamlined approach?

Many thanks