We all are aware of what calamities and lockdowns can do to our business. And that’s exactly when businesses had to decide which side to choose: offline or online? More importantly in healthcare, why wait for any disaster to occur only to realize that our medical labs’ business management needs enhancements? In fact, we must be ready to face anything that the future brings and also sustain ourselves to do better in the growing competition & the changes we see in the market.
Limitations of an offline or standalone lab software
With lab software that is standalone, offline or one-time installation-based, you have more limitations compared to the features it provides. It is inconvenient to do business with when a major portion of the lab requires a smart workflow. But, offline lab software fails to fulfill these key requirements. Hence, if you utilize such tools for your business, you might be falling short in many aspects of quality service delivery.
Here are some from the list of limitations or missing features –
Let’s face it. Paper management is complex & it directly impacts productivity.
One patient has at least 5 documents in his file – registration papers, bills, case papers, test lists, and past medical documents.
So if you are looking at managing at least 10 patients a day, not to forget the business paperwork, the lab documentation, and others, half our efforts are torn by it. And the latter half is taken by the data entry task.
How is that more important in healthcare than aiding patients? Does your offline software help you get rid of this paper management?
Lab Finance & Tracking
Managing lab finances is a task no lab can let go of. Although are you aware that a lack of a tracking system can keep you aloof from the leakages that usually occur in lab management. Offline systems often fail to offer this feature which can be a major bottleneck for business growth & stability.
Data Backup & Management
Data drives your business. Patient data is sensitive whereas business data is critical. An offline laboratory software is highly prone to data leakages, data loss, and data security. Also, offline LIMS systems often have accessibility limitations and work slowly with a high load, therefore slowing down the daily workflow. Similarly, the loss of any kind of data can be a big problem for businesses.
Heavy Price For Upgrades
Healthcare is data-driven but a standalone LIMS is unable to fulfill heavy data load; especially during peak business hours. This is why labs often go for upgrades and pay a heavy price affecting their budget. This might also hamper service due to re-installation processes and halt system utilization, impacting the business somehow. On a similar note, maintenance of such a system will again ask for your extra bucks.
As per an interview with Dr. Sangita Joag, Satyam Pathology, India, the offline system that she opted for her business offered only means for patient registration and report generation. However, it wasn’t robust enough to offer competitive benefits like analytics, tracking, and automation tools that ease business.
So, despite having an offline lab management software, you have to purchase other software as well for lab billing, finance and even accounting for that matter. This is again a costly affair adding up to all the limitations mentioned above.
In fact, an offline system often calls for additional purchases or add-ons for malware protection, data storage upgrades, and more; which adds to more expenses than planned.
To summarize, despite offline software, more than half the process involved in lab management requires manual effort with paperwork and redundant tasks. These might lead to more errors, leakages, and TAT from the given system.
Why Cloud Solutions are simply superior to their offline counterparts
A cloud-based LIMS software is a perfect solution to all the above challenges (also requirements) that a clinical lab needs. It must be held as a comprehensive solution for end-to-end lab management including lab finances, billing, communication, and more.
Enlisted are the benefits of cloud-based lab management solution:
- Disaster proof
- Easy accessibility anytime, anywhere
- Faster management due to the digitization
- Robust & ready-to-use features
- Automatic upgradation doesn’t hamper work
- No maintenance required
- Highly manageable with fewer staff
- More opportunities for business improvement & expansion
- Unmatched data security & reliability
- Integrations with other tools/software
To know more read the article on the advantages of lab automation for your business.
What the immediate future of LIMS & Medical labs looks like
Healthcare technology & solutions are becoming smart and hence patients expect a smarter experience with your diagnostic lab. Since the diagnostics era is emerging and growing to deliver more benefits, living up to and matching patient expectations can help you deliver faster response and aid. This engages them and boosts retention for your business.
While report accuracy & quick report delivery is the new norm, if you have it, it will again add up to higher customer retention, gauging customer loyalty. Moreover, complete digitization helps in faster communication with all stakeholders (referrals, organizations, partners, and even your valuable patients). In a nutshell, quick & quality service all boosts your medical diagnostic business to stand still in the growing & transforming market.