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How document scanners are helping the healthcare industry to care even more

Across Europe, the healthcare industry is under pressure on several fronts. An ageing population and a growing clinical burden have increased practice workloads.


Ever-expanding administrative and budgetary demands are compelling healthcare professionals to work more efficiently1. And the changes brought about by the COVID-19 Pandemic have required people to adapt quickly - driving the search for new ways of working and accelerating the digital transformation in healthcare.

It seems obvious: the longer clinicians spend with patients, the better quality of care they can give.2  But the sheer volume of admin in the healthcare industry is huge. On average, a staggering 120 admin tasks go through a clinic’s system every day. But a number of those get sent back to doctors because information was missing3 – wasting their precious time.

Every minute spent managing the amount of information held in physical documents – including access to medical records, prescriptions, medical reports and letters - adds even more to that admin burden.

Digital transformation in healthcare

70% of healthcare workers say that the duplication of work and slow manual processes get in the way of them achieving their daily priorities and have an impact on the patient experience.4

This has pushed many healthcare organisations to find better ways of managing their information. As they turn to technology to make their jobs easier and more efficient, a major factor in this transformation is the digitisation of patient information.

The simplest step towards creating electronic patient records is to convert paper records into digital documents, so that the information in them can be shared and accessed by everyone who needs it. This makes document scanners an increasingly essential piece of clinic equipment.

Why do you need a document scanner?

Converting paper records into a digital format that can be quickly and securely read, stored, searched and shared is easier than you might think.

With a document scanner, paper documents can be turned into searchable PDFs that can be linked to electronic patient records. That makes access to medical records quicker and easier via search keywords. The use of document scanners also enables the information in those records to be read and imported directly into patient information and management systems such as Docman and EMIS.

Using a document scanner to digitise your information means that records are less likely to be lost, misplaced or exposed to damage or security risks. Plus, if the letters or prescriptions you scan contain barcodes, the digitisation of paper records can be enhanced if you choose a desktop scanner that supports barcode scanning software. This automatically reads the most common barcode formats as you scan and automatically saves the documents to pre-defined folders, saving time and reducing errors.

Easier access to medical records

The ability of clinical and administrative staff to share the right information with the right person at the right time means they can make better informed decisions quickly and easily. And 77% of healthcare professionals already agree that digital workflows will become more important in the future4.

More importantly, this information can be easily accessed at the different patient touchpoints to create a much more interconnected system of care4.

For example, one French hospital combined 10 years of patient notes into a single data set. That enabled them to view holistic trends in their data for the first time and take a more strategic view of their healthcare delivery. By analysing correlations between different variables - i.e. identifying common factors in patients with specific conditions - they were able to track the effectiveness of different medications that had been prescribed.4 That’s technology making a real difference.

To find out how Brother can help you reduce admin, improve staff performance and provide patients with even better care, check out our specialist document scanners for the healthcare industry.




1. https://osha.europa.eu/en/publications/reports/current-and-emerging-occupational-safety-and-health-osh-issues-in-the-healthcare-sector-including-home-and-community-care

2. https://pilotfeasibilitystudies.biomedcentral.com/ “A pilot study of the duration of GP consultations in Ireland” -  01 December 2019

3. https://www.england.nhs.uk/gp/case-studies/tackling-a-backlog-of-admin-tasks-north-brink-practice-midlands-and-east/

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