Palm vein biometrics solution ensures positive patient identification and reduces duplicate medical records at University of Utah Health

Jul 17, 2018

As a 700-bed healthcare system that provides care to patients in six states encompassing more than 10 percent of the continental United States, University of Utah Health’s patient population continues to grow annually – and so do the chances for medical records to be duplicated. To support their 1.1 million annual outpatient visits and 50,000 emergency room visits, University of Utah Health turned to Imprivata PatientSecure to fight patient misidentification and mitigate the costs associated with it.

The team at University of Utah Health looked into the costs of duplicate medical records and found that the costs can be staggering. According to their team, a master patient index cleanup can cost up to $650,000. The cost to clean up overlays ranges from $60-100 or higher per incident and is time-consuming for full time employees who might prefer to be engaged in less tedious tasks.

Furthermore, Travis McKee, a Senior Application System Analyst at the University of Utah Health, explained that not all costs are quantifiable, that healthcare providers must consider the cost incurred when a patient loses trust in their healthcare organization. He said, “When you admit someone on the wrong patient record, they can lose faith in the rest of the system and process – and when there’s that loss of trust, we can’t win that back. We knew we needed to fix this.”

Upon implementing Imprivata PatientSecure, McKee and his team quickly realized the product was a “natural fit” for solving patient misidentification. He said, “it was one of the easiest installs I’ve ever been a part of,” stressing the simplicity of the requirements for installation as it only took their team three to four months to implement the solution.

With Imprivata PatientSecure biometric palm vein scanning technology, the University of Utah Health team created a 1:1 link between a patient and his or her medical record. Because of a high patient adoption rate, McKee says they quickly saw a return on their investment.

After turning to Imprivata PatientSecure, the University of Utah Health team was able to efficiently reduce duplicate medical records, boost hospital revenue, reduce denied claims and identity fraud, and improve overall patient safety.

For more on University of Utah Health’s successful and seamless implementation, read their success story here.