Can policy management software improve compliance?

A policy management system can help hospitals stay on top of myriad regulatory requirements and improve compliance in several ways, a recent commentary in Becker's Hospital Review contends.

A policy management system helps hospitals understand the depth and breadth of policies with which it must comply, track and update policy training efforts, report results in real time, and prepare for audits, according to Saud Juman, CEO of healthcare software firm PolicyMedical.

By automating policy management, hospitals also can reduce costs associated with distributing, storing and tracking policies, according to the commentary. The paper trail created by constantly monitoring policy-related training and exam-passage rates reduces potential litigation costs, Juman says.

Compliance requirements criss-cross all areas of hospital operations, including physician quality. Providers risk a 1 percent Medicare penalty for noncompliance with the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS), for example. And agencies like the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) require annual updates of safety plans and procedures to avoid fines for noncompliance. The right software can help healthcare providers develop compliance plans and ensure that regulatory compliance remains a priority without requiring additional staff hires.

The demand seems to be there. Providers looking to replace their electronic health records (EHRs) list regulatory compliance as one top functions they want in a new EHR. Policy management software can notify hospital leaders when regulatory changes or other factors render policies obsolete, Juman notes, as well as quickly prepare and distribute updates.

To learn more:
- read the Becker's commentary