Closing a healthcare facility is an important decision with many facets to consider.
Cariend has put together resources based on our many years of experience to help clients navigate this process and answer common questions.
Ensuring Continuity of Care
Southwest Georgia Regional Medical Center (SWGMC), a 25-bed rural hospital in Cuthbert, GA, announced closure in the summer of 2020. Phoebe Putney Health System engaged Cariend to assist with the wind down of medical records. As a 70+ year old healthcare entity, SWGMC had records housed in multiple systems and locations including both physical and digital, medical, and non-medical, boxed and open file records.
Patient Notification Requirements for Closing a Medical Practice
When it comes to closing a practice or healthcare facility, properly notifying patients is one of the most important considerations. While many states are vague about the requirements, every state is clear about seeking to penalize physicians for abandonment or untimely records access. The below resource is a state-by-state guide to help physicians and practices navigate the patient notification process, ensuring continuity of patient care, avoiding trouble, and achieving peace of mind.
Compliance Risks for Retiring Physicians
If you are considering closing your practice, knowing who will care for your patient records is an important next step. Ensure you understand the records regulations, avoid costly penalties for improperly managing records, provide continuity of care for your patients, and enjoy retirement with piece of mind. Download the below white paper that details all the steps to consider for closing your practice and protecting yourself, providing for your patients, and preserving your legacy.
Impact of Hospital Closure on Rural Communities
Rural hospital closures have a significant impact on the surrounding community. The obvious immediate concern is transitioning care for patients requiring treatment, but the longer-term impact is often overlooked. Providing access to records for both patients seeking care and former employees needing to further their careers is of utmost importance. Failure to make provisions for the medical and business records of the closed hospitals adds to the stress of the closure throughout the community for many years to come.
What is a Records Custodian?
A records custodian is a partner to help healthcare providers in transition. When a doctor closes their practice or a hospital shuts down a department, patient records remain that must be managed for years after the last patient is seen. There is a legal and moral responsibility to provide access to patient records, but there’s no revenue to offset the expense of ongoing management. Download the below fact sheet to learn more about your options and the different ways a records custodian can help you navigate transitions in your healthcare practice.
Healthcare Records Solutions Brief
Closing a healthcare facility is a complicated and nuanced process, especially as it relates to records and the ongoing release of information for patients. Cariend’s experienced management team has created a process to handle all facets of dealing with records in these situations. Click here to download our healthcare solution brief to learn more about the Cariend Continuum process for dealing with records. Managing healthcare records for you, ensuring patient care, compliance, and cost controls.
Business Records Solutions Brief
Even when a business ceases operation, laws still require records to be managed for various time periods. If the records are not properly stored, released, and ultimately destroyed when the statutory retention is met, you could face consequences, including fines and penalties. Click here to download our business brief to learn more about the process by which we handle business records.
Checklist for Closing Your Healthcare Facility
When preparing for the closure of a medical facility or any application where Protected Health Information (PHI) is stored, there are a number of steps you can take to reduce costs, minimize risk, and improve efficiency. With decades of experience in this area, Cariend has created a helpful checklist to ensure you have covered all your bases when closing your facility. Click here to download our healthcare closure checklist.
Common Mistakes when Choosing a Custodial Records Provider
Cariend’s custodial records team frequently sees the same mistakes made by healthcare facilities closing. These mistakes can be costly at a time when cost certainty and compliance are a must. With three decades of experience, Cariend understands this moment and knows how to guide you and your team through this process with expertise and empathy.
Rural Hospitals Can Find Savings in HIM
Rural hospitals are an integral part of our nation’s healthcare infrastructure providing critical services – from primary to long-term care – for nearly 57 million Americans. Recent years have presented countless challenges for rural hospitals. Factors such as rising cost of care, increased competition, lower reimbursement rates, unbalanced payer populations, reduced patient volume, uncompensated care, increasing labor costs and increased regulation have constricted operating margins for rural hospitals.