To keep a hungry electronic health record (EHR) system fed with a vast quantity of documents needed to support non-profit, Texas poverty-belt medical clinics needed a solution that wouldn’t cripple an already-strained IT budget, while also keeping up with advances in healthcare technology.
Engage Panasonic, a leading manufacturer of document scanning solutions, and CDW, a leading multi-brand technology solutions provider, to provide advanced, award-winning document scanners through a non-profit discount program, saving the clinic’s IT budget for additional technological upgrades.
Working in concert, Panasonic and CDW provided CACOST with 80 award-winning KV-S1015C scanners, thereby streamlining a burdensome EHR system and realizing significant savings to upgrade every examination room in their system with a computer and a free-standing equipment storage system.
The non-profit Community Action Corporation of South Texas (CACOST) has been hyper-proactively pursuing its mission to continuously improve the lives of South Texans in 16 poverty-stricken counties by providing high-quality healthcare, education, housing and economic opportunities for 49 successful years.
CACOST provides its approximately 23,000 clients with services including, among others, Head Start, emergency food assistance, job training and placement assistance, veterans aid, case-management services, energy programs and other utility assistance, Early Childhood Intervention, an evidence-based Teen Leadership Development Program and home-delivered meals.
Among CACOST's important contributions to South Texas, the one service that touches clients in every demographic is the operation of seven Federally Qualified Health Centers handling approximately 65,000 visits per year.
Though CACOST is primarily funded by federal, state and local grants, its ability to ”stay the course” and pursue its vision of a vibrant community where everyone has access to quality healthcare, education, housing, and employment is largely dependent on what it calls “services and partnerships”
Early in 2016, it became evident that the clinics’ growing client count and increasing use of state-of-the-art diagnostic procedures would require the installation of a sophisticated Electronic Health Record (EHR) system that would render its existing scanners for inputting paper-based patient and treatment records and converting them into electronic documents obsolete. The existing scanners were simply too slow and too unreliable to produce virtually endless pages of scans good enough to be rendered into adequately searchable PDFs.
The solution? A “service and partnership” arrangement with industry-leading scanner manufacturer Panasonic and CDW, a multi-brand technology solutions provider to business, government, education and healthcare organizations.
Under this arrangement, Panasonic and CDW provided CACOST exclusive non-profit, discounted pricing to purchase 80 “Drummond Certified™,” award-winning KV-S1015C document scanners.
“The primary reason we went with Panasonic was that we knew they could do the job,” Jason Muller, CACOST Information Technology Manager, says, adding that the decision to purchase the KV-S1015Cs has already been proven correct by their seamless integration into multiple locations at all CACOST clinics, their contribution to increased workflow speed and quality and their six months of 100 percent availability and flawless performance.
“We have finally gotten to the point where our pediatric and general practitioners in any location can go to a computer terminal and bring up specific aspects of patient case histories, diagnostics, prescription records, test results and other pertinent information simply by entering a search term,” Muller says.
Muller stresses that though the KV-S1015Cs were selected because they were the best scanners for the job, the non-profit program savings enabled him to upgrade every examination room in the system with a computer and a free-standing equipment storage system.
“A common challenge among non-profit organizations is that the technology needed to provide adequate service is constantly evolving and advancing while their funding gets more constricted,” Mike Collins of CDW’s Non-Profit Team notes. ”As budgets continue to shrink, technology providers like CDW and Panasonic work together to equip non-profit organizations with optimal solutions.”
“CACOST’s mission statement is impressive, especially given how large and widespread – more than 18,000 square miles – their service area is,” Collins added. “With CDW’s breadth and depth of technology, services, and support, we were dedicated to supporting that mission.
Panasonic System Communications Company National Sales Manager, Fred Scherman, echoed Collins thoughts about the synergy between the private sector, particularly corporate America, and organizations such as CACOST.
“As a company, we have specific user groups whose needs have to be met,” Scherman commented. “Public service groups such as CACOST also have users whose needs have to be met. The difference is that if we don’t properly service our customers, they have any number of other product vendors to turn to. If CACOST fails, their ‘customers’ have nowhere to go except back into the pit of poverty, ill health, rotting teeth, and malnourishment that CACOST has been so dedicated to helping them climb out of. That would be a real tragedy, one whose negative ramifications would be felt for decades.”
“Since its inception 98 years ago, Panasonic’s management philosophy has always stressed making positive contributions to society that exceed expectations in much the same way our products and services do,” Scherman continued. “Way back when, our founder, Konosuke Matsushita, made contributing to society the first of his seven core principles of management philosophy. And that is still an integral part of our corporate culture today
“But the one Konosuke quote I always remember when we take part in an outreach project with organizations like CACOST and CDW is this: Big idealistic, humanistic goals and beliefs are not incompatible with success in business. That was true in 1918, and here at Panasonic it’s just as true today.”