We were recently at the HCCA conference in Orlando and one of the most common questions that healthcare providers asked us is, “Is healthcare policy management software reliable?” This is a common and understandable concern.
Reliability is one of the key metrics that is used to measure the quality of software. Reliability primarily relates to a system’s overall performance. A software system with a very low number of failures is highly desirable, and a failure is said to have happened when the actual outcome of a program is different from the expected outcome.
Misconception That Reliability Is The Only Measure Of System Quality
Although reliability is an important measure of a software’s quality, users have to consider this metric alongside other parameters. For instance, consider logically incorrect software that has a low frequency of failures; and another software that is logically correct, but with a high frequency of failures. Based on comparing just the failure rates, the incorrect software could wrongly emerge as the better system. Hence reliability must always be considered in tandem with the logical correctness/accuracy of the software.
Importance Of Reliability In Healthcare Policy Management Systems
If the healthcare policy management software is not reliable, it could lead to a number of problems, such as:
- The information available is not up to date
- Documents are being accessed by unauthorized personnel
- The system is unresponsive/inaccessible
These issues could lead to a number of negative knock-on effects such as:
- A delay in the approval process
- Non-compliance with HIPAA, AAAHC or other regulations.
- An accident
- A lawsuit
This is why it is paramount to have a healthcare policy management system that has a high degree of reliability.
Measuring Reliability In Health Care Policy Management Systems
A number of factors can lead to software failures. For example, it may be human error on behalf of the software development engineers and testers. As a Quality assurance engineer at PolicyMedical, I am aware of how important and critical a policy management system is to a healthcare organization. This is why we have developed a process to produce software by incorporating some of the best coding and testing practices, which allow maximum test coverage and test scenario selection. We also use the best tools on the market for performing automated testing.
The size and complexity of the software code can also lead to failures as can the operational environment. Having centralized policy management software (in our case a cloud-based environment) ensures the information provided is always up to date for every user and avoids non-compliance.
A final consideration is the development process used. At PolicyMedical, we practice agile software development methodology, which is key in building products like PolicyManager. This is because it helps us to improve our product in line with our client’s needs. This means we are able to customize the software to a healthcare organization’s specific requirements.
If your organization is planning to invest in the best policy management system, this article will hopefully give you some pointers in preparing for your Request For Proposal (RFP) document when evaluating the software vendors. Overall policy management software is incredibly reliable and represents the safest way to organize and manage policies.
If you would like to find out more about our healthcare policy management software please contact us. Or click here to request a free demonstration. Alternatively feel free to explore the many articles in our knowledge center.