Do you remember this TV commercial from a few years ago? The room is filled with bedraggled executives and managers. It is obvious they have been working for hours, the room is a mess, costs are off, ties are loosened and the conference table is overflowing with papers, files, binders and reports. They are looking desperately for ways to save money.
Finally someone asks what it costs to create all that paper. The leader looks at the clutter on the table and with a stunned expression and says, “It could be millions.”
It may not be costing you millions to maintain your paper file system but it is a safe bet that it is costing you tens of thousands every year.
Dentists often take the attitude that paper charts work fine and they don’t cost anything so why invest in an expensive computer system? Like the paperwork in the TV commercial the costs to create and maintain paper charts can be significant but we often don’t see it because it is hidden in the process of doing business.
Estimates on the costs of creating and maintaining a paper records system range from $25,000 to almost $50,000 per year.
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