Dec 15

The Value of Patient Appointment Reminder Software and Service

Having software to help keep track of medical records and patient relations is essential to the smooth operation of a good medical practice. As a matter of fact, the use of patient appointment reminder software by the University of Rochester as well as Johns Hopkins resulted in a 30% drop in no-show rates. When this is considered in terms of revenue, follow ups and avoidance of complications, the percentage is worth noting.

While there are plenty of different reminder software systems available, not all of them are created equally and some overcharge for the same services offered by other companies. Ideally, you want the most economical deal which offers you a phone system, group messaging, social reviews, and intra-office communication. This will streamline all office efforts and reduce problems significantly. With fewer no-show patients, scheduling obviously becomes easier.

An affordable service can be found to offer you excellent software and customer support without having to sign a term contract. No cost phone integration along with your Practice Management System initiates coordination of less expensive phone service. The software will compile social reviews for collection of data. Group messaging allows staff to send large amounts of appointment reminders at a single time.

You will be provided with an intra-office communication system which provides for greater efficiency in staff-to-staff communications. Reminders are automatically provided as part of this system and it is tied to the scheduling. Therefore, everyone can keep a clear eagle eye on patient activity. With free training and full customer support, it is impossible to go wrong. Even if it isn’t the right service for your practice, at least there is no obligation to stay with non-contract services offering such a wide range of benefits to your practice at low monthly rates. Your practice is your business, so streamlining it can result in greater profits.

With patient appointment reminder service software, scheduling is made easier. Everybody knows well that no-shows thoroughly mess up a schedule for the practice. It also causes problems down the line because patients need to come to their appointments to help avoid getting even sicker. Then there are the no-show fees to deal with and it makes it impossible for patients to afford to show up. The situation simply worsens from there and that is why this software can streamline medical office practices and scheduling so well. A solution was needed and many were created.

Possibilities with this software include voice and email notifications for patients, with follow-up to ensure they show up on time. The status of any and all appointments is automatically updated with all call results listed clearly. Special messages unique to particular patients and special appointments can be created as well to provide additional emphasis for the patient to show up. Other benefits include a way to get back all of the lost time for physicians and staff simply by taking client information and automating it through such a software and service. The result is improved patient health management and overall office performance. Paper mailing costs are also greatly minimized by software automation.

Dec 15

Overcoming The Challenges Of Legacy Information Systems

There’s a computer-world phrase for it: Garbage in, garbage out. We’re all familiar with what it means; the quality of information we can get from a piece of software depends on the information it was given in the first place. But it’s a little more than that. It’s about the way data can be interpreted once it’s been uploaded that can yield nuggets of financial gold…

A colleague recently took over financial control of an organisation from someone who’d been running it for years.

The electronic records within the management information system, although apparently accurate, were contained in a convoluted series of spreadsheets, rendering any kind of financial analysis time-consuming and labour-intensive.

And that’s the problem with any ‘legacy’ system. As created, they worked; but over the years it was easier to make slight modifications on a ‘least effort’ basis, rather than start again using the latest available systems. The result is that opportunities can be overlooked, and in a worse-case scenario could mask financial failings with far-reaching long-term consequences.

We examine below three of the major problems with legacy management information systems, and how they can be overcome.

  • What rather than why. A list of numbers is, well, a list of numbers. In an outdated management information system, it’ll show you overspending has happened, but won’t tell you why. Take expense management. With an old system, the raw numbers will tell you expense claims are too high. Using cloud based expense management software, you’d be able to interrogate the data and find out why the claims have burst their budget. The spending pattern could highlight a flaw in the company policy about the way certain tasks must be undertaken. Revision of the policy would eliminate the inefficiency and make the company more profitable. Without effective data interrogation, you’d never identify the root cause of the problem.

 

  • Data collation. Are all of your departments or subsidiary companies singing from the same hymn sheet? If there are discrepancies in the reporting methods used, that were tolerated simply because it was the most expedient solution at the time, then time and management effort is being wasted in bringing them into line to facilitate even the most basic analysis. Furthermore, there’s every chance that the legacy system is based on spreadsheets, and that builds in the opportunity to add errors to the data collation, which would render the whole operation pointless. Take the expense example again; assuming that entries are made diligently (and failure to do so takes money from employees’ pockets, which is why it’s in their interests to get it right) the accrued data can be manipulated much more easily than with ‘old fashioned’ spreadsheets. It can also be exported to wherever you need it to go, both internally and externally, and can be interrogated in several ways.

 

  • Changing is an expense we don’t have a budget for. Then it’s time you wrote in an extra line. The cost of using new systems effectively should never be looked at in isolation, because that’s not how it works. Any new system must earn its corn, and there’s every likelihood that your expense management system will probably pay for itself every month. Those savings will come in two ways. Firstly, there’s the simple saving achieved by more effective and non-duplicated claiming; secondly there is the management time saved in processing claims and collating numbers. Add to that, you’ll be able to calculate the savings you’d want to achieve to make the investment in business expense software worthwhile.

Dec 15

Using Hardware-Assisted Technology to Speed Up the Verification Process

Chip designers are under constant pressure to enhance performance of chips while simultaneously minimizing cost. One way to achieve this is by speeding up the verification process – as verification constitutes more than 70% of the entire chip design process, embracing tools and technologies that result in faster verification is the need of the hour.

The Need for Hardware Assisted Verification Models

In order to meet the demands of shortened development cycles, it is essential for hardware and software on a chip to be verified at the same time. Since software development cannot wait till the hardware aspects of the chip are developed, design teams need to adopt a fail-safe way to verify chips will work as intended as soon as the embedded software is run. This requires the design team to create a working prototype for software development as early as possible, and much before the end of the hardware design cycle.

Hardware Assisted Technology

Given time-to-market pressures, the process of verification has come a long way. For many digital design engineers, there are some compelling reasons for performing hardware-assisted verification. Since performance is key, it is important for verification systems to deliver the highest performance models and environment for SoC verification.

• Hardware acceleration techniques help overcome the challenge of meeting the performance requirements for SoC verification.

• Writing SystemVerilog testbenches for a specific piece of design can be very laborious, especially while testing the interaction between different blocks.

• With hardware-assisted verification, you do not have to write the testbench or worry about how the interfaces will be exercised.

• For example, to check if a peripheral device works as intended, you can take a physical or virtual peripheral device, connect it up to the design and then use the device driver for the controller to perform functions to see if the interface works.

• As the number of vectors that can be run per second is substantial, you can make sure that the interaction between hardware and software is as expected in shorten span of time

• Hardware accelerators allow you to use components like FPGAs to build the hardware platform.

• Using embedded test benches, you can perform hardware-assisted verification and virtualize the environment to speed up the verification process.

Emulation Systems

With increases in the size and complexity of today’s SoC devices, verification requires you to conduct massive tests spanning billions of cycles. Using advanced verification technologies like hardware-assisted emulation systems, you can accelerate the verification process and deliver the highest performance possible:

• Modern emulation systems encompass a broad portfolio of transactors and memory models that speed up the development of virtual system level verification environments.

• Emulation systems offer comprehensive debug with full signal visibility and support advanced use modes including power management verification and hybrid emulation

• With emulation, the design-under-test (DUT) is usually represented in the emulator, while the chip’s environment can be provided by connections outside the emulator.

• By using virtual bridges in conjunction with virtual test environments, you can connect the DUT through protocol-specific transactors to real devices

• In addition, system-level debug components can also be used to understand the high-level behaviour of SoCs.

Prototyping

Another way to improve the verification process is to use physical prototyping to meet time-to-market requirements.

• By leveraging a hardware assisted system environment, prototyping enables early embedded software development, allowing hardware and software to co-exist well ahead of chip fabrication.

• You can shorten design schedules and avoid costly device re-spins through the use of tightly integrated and easy-to-use hardware and tools, and accelerate the process of software development

• Hardware-assisted prototyping enables you to eliminate redundant IP prototyping tasks by using pre-tested components and maximize ROI by applying modular systems across multiple projects

• You can make your products immediately available using the latest generation of FPGA devices, bypassing the effort and expense of custom-built systems

Reduce Verification Effort

Although as a designer, you may choose different methods for verification, the fact remains that hardware-assisted technology can help you speed the overall verification effort. Hardware-assisted verification reduces the amount of effort – in developing the model as well as in writing the test benches. You not only speed up the verification of the hardware, but also quicken the process of debugging, and ensure faster time-to-market.

Charles Taylor is an avid business writer and technology evangelist with nearly eight years of rich experience in writing for diverse domains and industries. He is fond of exploring the upcoming updates and news on the engineering development.  He explores the ideas and follow aviation consulting services to derive insight to present in a good way. A spiritualist by heart, Charles is a cinephile, well versed with film criticism, metaphysics, and philosophy. He has also dabbled in the arts, notably photography, multi-cuisine food preparation, film direction, dance and poetry.

Dec 15

Common Challenges In Mobile Testing Services

Mobile devices are growing in popularity at an indescribable rate. Nearly every individual has a smart phone, tablet or another mobile device; even household appliances are not immune to this growing market. The prevalence of mobile devices and applications means that software testing is even more essential. Like with any sort of endeavor, there are bound to be challenges in mobile testing. Below is a list of the 7 most common obstacles organizations and QA engineers face in testing mobile devices and applications.

Diverse devices, configurations and OS

Perhaps the most prevalent challenge with mobile testing services is the devices itself. There are numerous kinds of mobile devices, such as iPods, iPads, Android and Windows devices. There are also many different configurations and operating systems for each of these devices. QA engineers and developers have to make sure your application can function correctly across the vast number of devices and configurations.

Different types of apps

On top of seeing if an app will work across devices, carriers and OS, testers need to be aware of the different kinds of applications. QA engineers must consider particular requirements of native apps, web apps and hybrid apps.

Variety of screen sizes

Another obstacle that QA testers face is the difference in screen sizes. An application may work well on an iPad and the screen will show everything that is intended to be shown, but that application may not work as well on smaller screens.

Multiple carriers and connection types

Verizon, Sprint, T-mobile and AT&T are just a few of the carriers that mobile testers need to consider. Not all carriers will have the same network standards, amount of data or coverage. Also, QA engineers need to consider the various connection types as well. How will an app work using a 3G network as compared to a 4G network? How about over Wi-Fi? How will the app work in airplane mode or if there’s no connection? Even though carrier testing is not that important any more, bandwidth and connectivity are all questions that QA engineers have to consider as they test your mobile application.

Internationalization

Another obstacle that mobile testers face is internationalization. Translating applications into other languages can prove difficult. This is especially true if the language reads right to left, such as Arabic and Hebrew, instead of left to right, such as English and Spanish.

Lack of time or tools

Some organizations simply may not have the time to thoroughly test their application. They also may not have the tools needed to properly test their application. These two obstacles could cause the application to be released into the market without adequate testing, which could result in dissatisfied customers and a loss in profit.

Inexperienced testers

Sometimes an organization’s QA team simply doesn’t have the experience or knowledge to test their application. Also, an organization might have their developers testing their application instead of QA engineers. Having developers test as well may seem like it will save money, however, that is not the case. The application will lose quality because developers are not trained to look at an app in the same way testers are. Testers are willing to “break” an application in order to ensure that the finished application is of the utmost quality. Developers, understandably, may not wish to “break” their creation. This could result in critical errors appearing later on.

How can one get past these challenges?

  • Hire a QA provider

One way to conquer these hurdles is to hire a software testing company that offers mobile testing. An efficient testing company will already have the tools you need to test your application. If your QA provider tests offshore, you will save valuable time as the QA engineers will test when your day has ended. The best mobile testing services providers will have ways to overcome these common obstacles.

  • Have a testing lab

Efficient mobile testing partners will have a cutting-edge lab dedicated to mobile testing. This lab will contain numerous devices and multiple configurations of these devices so your application is tested thoroughly. This will also help with testing across different screen sizes and operating systems.

  • Have experienced engineers

These companies will have highly trained engineers with years of experience in testing and expertise in a wide variety of testing tools. These skilled engineers would have been trained in the latest methods of testing and they will be determined to find bugs in your application early on, so your developers will have more time to fix the bugs and ensure your application is of the best quality.