Making change is hard, but it's time to throw out the filing cabinet
By Mike James | 5th October 2020 | General
Us therapists are funny old creatures.
We are truly creatures of habit.
Creatures who like tradition and routine.
Creatures who quite honestly find change difficult, no matter what shape or form it comes in. And the less familiar it looks, and the bigger transition we face, we are even more fearful of it. We are often guilty of seeing evolution as revolution, with the common response being “I have always done it this way, so surely any change is bad right? Why change? This way works”.
We are also very tactile creatures. Whether it's the welcome handshake in the clinic reception or treatment room, the objective assessment, the treatment session itself, the reassurance or the reward for hard work by the patient, even just the pat on the back for the work well done, we like to feel things between our fingertips.
That’s why we hide behind the easy excuses of “I’m too busy”, “I’ll do it in the new year”, “I can’t afford it right now” and many more like this whenever change is mentioned.
Maybe the last bastion of this tradition is the good old filing cabinet.
Therapists are proud of their cabinets; we can even hold them as badges of honour sometimes celebrating the number of people we have interacted with and helped since we started. Rows of drawers listed A-Z by year.
A tangible trophy of our career and the people we have hopefully helped.
Now we all know that of course we need to keep them for recordkeeping, vigilance and for the obvious legal requirements pertinent to our respective professions. But it is the patient records themselves, the notes that we need to keep, not the noisy old cabinets. These are simply the old, dated exoskeleton, the coffin that we store them in.
Is it that deep down we keep them because we are scared of change at the heart of the matter? Surely, we all realise by sheer default of how we now store our family photos and memories, our music and video collections that there are far more efficient and secure ways to do so right?
Clinically we know change is hard, when new evidence comes to light it can be a challenge to adapt and adopt new ways, but we make the change because it is the right thing to do for us and our patients. Change is also a chance, an opportunity to do things better!.
Is the real issue the need to investigate the psychology of why we hang on to these old ways? If it is fear of change that is holding us back, then what do we use to evolve clinically?
The answer is usually we gather the support of others who can help and this improves our ability to try new things and learn by doing.
So, no longer having to store paper for 7 years, the ability to access any note at any location, searchable, worry free GDPR, templates to speed up the input of notes and not to mention reducing the risks from Covid-19 you would think would be an obvious change right? For all the reasons mentioned above it’s no surprise that despite the obvious benefits many of us have still struggled to make the shift. So how can we learn to embrace changes that have such obvious benefits?
We’re tactile and people orientated so seek and use the support provided by someone who understands it, holds your hand through the process and remains at your side whenever needed moving forward. Someone I am unashamedly happy to say such as Sports Injury Fix.
A problem shared is a problem halved, but it is much more than that when the people you share the problem with have already helped hundreds of people with the exact same problem.
When a patient sees a therapist we know how daunting medical jargon can be, how fear provoking it can be, so what do we do? We break it down and help them understand it in simple everyday ways.
We know that much of the technology available in the practise management arena comes with technological words and is confusing to therapists. So WHAT DO Sports Injury Fix do? Well we break it down into simple terms for you to understand. Why? Because this software and these transitions are built by therapists for therapists and we have been there ourselves.
So, it really is time to throw out that filing cabinet, it is truly time to streamline your admin, time to make your record and note keeping more efficient and safer.
If for no other reason, then security really should be a driver in itself. Yes, you may have a fancy lock on the cabinet, a fancy lock on the door and the building, but at the end of the day it is physical security and that is always vulnerable.
A friend of mine growing up lost all their family photos in a house fire, they have literally no photos of themselves under the age of 10. Why? Because they were simply stored in a box under the bed, now of course it is a different era, but let us embrace that era.
Speaking of beds, I am pretty sure we would all sleep well knowing our patient data is safe and secure avoiding such problems by being backed up electronically on multiple cloud servers as they are at Sports Injury Fix.
So if any of this resonates with you, if it is something you thought you should do, something you need or want to do or just want to know more about, then please do get in touch and find out how we can help you.
The time to Feng shui your filing cabinet is long overdue, and in these crazy times of change that we are living in, has there ever been a better time?