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    Easy tips to converting to a paperless office

    Editor’s Note: Welcome to “Eye Catching: Let's Chat,” a blog series featuring contributions from members of the ophthalmic community. These blogs are an opportunity for ophthalmic bloggers to engage with readers with about a topic that is top of mind, whether it is practice management, experiences with patients, the industry, medicine in general, or healthcare reform. The series continues with this blog by Donna Suter, president of Suter Consulting Group. The views expressed in these blogs are those of their respective contributors and do not represent the views of  Ophthalmology Times or UBM Medica.


    Last month,we saw how low morale is frequently caused by constant change. Often, during prolonged change, the elephant in the room has a name. It’s a Paperless Office with Portals. For some, it’s EMR, others converting to ICD-10 and some the struggle to adopt the Rx order portion of your practice management software and properly enter a spectacle lens order into a vision plan online portal.

    In the June 30, 1975 issue of BusinessWeek[i], a modest 2,000 words described the advantages of office automation and what was then called Word Processors. While times have changed, the tension technology produces in personnel has not.

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    Converting to a paperless office is like baseball. As Yogi Berra once said: “Baseball is 90 percent mental; the other half is physical.”  

    Increasing optical productivity by going paperless requires restructuring and reorganizing. To many, the willingness of your team to make such changes and to discipline themselves to a system is the major factor in determining how quickly using practice management software becomes accepted.

    We are all ambivalent when confronted with the need for and possibility of making changes in our office routine. To understand ambivalence, try thinking about a change you have been asked to make, or think you should make, in your own life. Are you sure you want to change? Are you sure you are able to change?

    For example, perhaps you would like to get more sleep, but find it hard to go to bed earlier. There’s just too much to do, or your favorite TV shows are calling you, or it’s just too nice being up after everyone else is asleep and the house is quiet.

    Next: Talking about your company's objective with a 'We', not an I''

    Donna Suter
    Donna Suter is president of Suter Consulting Group.

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