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West Georgia Health, a regional health system in LaGrange, Ga., saw an opportunity to offer employers and their employees a comprehensive solution as an alternative to a patchwork of occupational health services in the community.
It created the West Georgia Worx occupational health program in late 2009. Based at a dedicated clinic in an industrial park, the program serves numerous companies including the health system itself, a sprawling 2.2-million-square-foot KIA manufacturing facility in nearby West Point and its suppliers.
Prior to start-up, West Georgia Health’s executive team had a lot to learn about the business. They soon discovered that definitive steps would need to be taken to build internal expertise and leverage collaboration with stakeholders in order to provide well-coordinated, high-quality, cost-effective services to employers across the care continuum.
Occupational health is a communication-intensive business that requires considerable attention to detail. For a multi-disciplinary program to succeed, adequate resources must be allocated to:
Senior management recognized that West Georgia Worx needed specialized occupational health software to help manage all aspects of its operations from the get-go.
The system recruited an experienced board-certified occupational medicine physician, Dr. Nick Vlachos, and other qualified staff. It also made a strategic decision to invest in UL’s SYSTOC® software solution to provide the foundation for its occupational health program.
Today, the clinic staff relies on SYSTOC to perform essential functions such as scheduling, documentation, coding and billing. The medical team uses the software’s innovative “Tap2Chart” and related functions to adhere to best clinical practices and support electronic medical recordkeeping.
Phillip Greene, program director, said he depends on SYSTOC to help him follow the ebb and flow of business on a daily basis. For example, he uses the software to keep a daily log on patient encounters by provider type, drug screen volumes and diagnostic referrals. He can tell at a glance when volumes are below or above average and how much business is being generated by top clients.
A metrics-driven manager, Greene appreciates how SYSTOC enables him to track the clinic’s financial performance and contributions to the health system’s bottom line. On a macro level, he uses SYSTOC to consolidate data on performance reports for senior administration. On a micro level, he accesses the software’s analytic capabilities to examine individual client activities in two categories – workers’ compensation and employer-paid services – to identify fluctuations, outliers and injury incident trends.
In April 2012, West Georgia Worx marked a milestone when it became the second program in Georgia to be awarded a three-year Quality Certification by the National Association of Occupational Health Professionals (www.NAOHP.com), an organization representing hospital-affiliated and free-standing occupational health programs and their personnel. The certification verifies that the program adheres to established national standards, giving it added credibility and another way to differentiate itself from competitors.
The program received an outstanding score of 97.5 out of a possible 100 points in compliance with NAOHP standards in six categories: administration, operational framework, staffing, quality assurance, product offerings, and sales and marketing.
Now, with the reassurance that SYSTOC gives them, staff members are able to focus their attention on customer service excellence. They are particularly proud of the clinic’s rapid turnaround times and consistently favorable patient satisfaction scores.
“Studies show a happy customer tells three other people, while an unhappy one tells nine or 10,” Greene said. “We adhere to the adage: ‘Promise only what you can deliver and deliver more than what you promise.”