Quick guide: Managing the cost of health care in correctional facilities
- Written by Amy Dinsmore
- October 5 2015
Providing health care services in correctional institutions is an incredibly complex matter. Both the National Institute of Corrections and National Commission on Correctional Health Care provide guidance on the matter – the NCCHC offers official certifications for accreditation. These organizations give administrators in correctional facilities vital insights into the challenges they face and the ways they can serve institutionalized patients. However, offering effective care is only the first step to success. Organizations must also develop methods to provide excellent care within the incredibly tight fiscal confines they face.
Failing to keep costs under control will undermine every phase of correctional health care initiatives. Simply put, the best way to avoid excess costs is to maximize the value of your human and knowledge resources. A cost-efficient document management software platform can be invaluable in this area. A DMS can help you manage costs in three key ways:
1. Simplify training
The complex standards in place regarding addiction-related programs, chronic, non-cancer pain management and other medical practices in corrections can make onboarding new staff members incredibly time-consuming and expensive. Centralizing training resources within a DMS lets you simplify policy education. You can also build quizzes, videos and other knowledge resources into the DMS, making all of these materials available through the web application. The result is a simplified, streamlined training process that lets employees get up to speed quickly, maximizing the value they can offer the organization.
2. Ease policy distribution and compliance
Policy flexibility is vital if you want to keep up with the changing demands of the industry and needs of patients. You can’t afford the costs of updating paper records, printing them, distributing them and having employees take time away from other work tasks to handle them. Integrating all policies into a DMS gives you end-to-end policy creation, editing, distribution and signature gathering tools, letting you simplify the process of updating your staff on new procedures.
3. Accelerate accreditation
Accreditation is an incredibly valuable prospect in corrections. Getting accredited verifies that you have the knowledge resources, documentation and policy measures in place to put your employees in a position to succeed. Getting accredited creates a foundation for operational excellence that drives value creation and minimizes costs. Getting accredited has traditionally been an expensive process, but a DMS puts all of your policies in the same place and can offer internal auditing tools, letting you accelerate accreditation.
The right technology investments can provide ongoing cost relief in correctional facility health care, and DMS platforms are an invaluable tool in this area because they help you maximize human resources.