Nuance Communications, Inc.(NASDAQ: NUAN) today announced a new version of Dragon Medical Practice Edition designed especially for smaller practices to help accelerate clinician adoption of Electronic Health Records (EHRs) and meaningful use of health information technology (HIT). Practice Edition is powered by the same award-winning Dragon Medical speech recognition technology used by more than 180,000 physicians today, including the largest, most advanced healthcare providers. Practice Edition introduces voice shortcuts to aid medical searches for information, and supports more than 90 specialized medical vocabularies and the customized needs of small practices, helping physicians improve productivity and document specialized care and medical decisions faster and more accurately.
Spurred by CMS incentive payments, EHR adoption by the estimated 300,000 physicians working in small practices in the US is expected to approach 80 percent by the end of 2013, according to a National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey. For many physicians in small practices, workflow speed and efficiency is often substantially reduced by the adoption of EHRs.
Dragon Medical Practice Edition makes it easier for physicians in small practices to document care into medical records using their voice, by enabling clinicians to both dictate the "medical decision-making" of patient visits and navigate through the EHR using speech. A few simple words, such as "Search UpToDate(R) for Acetaminophen contraindications" connects clinicians with the immediate medical information they need at any time within their clinical workflow. This improves the quality and completeness of the patient note and saves physicians valuable time with each patient visit. With up to 99 percent accuracy, physicians can dictate medical notes three times faster into an EHR, helping them save an average of 30 minutes a day through a more streamlined process.
Additionally, the solution helps ensures proper documentation and a more complete record for appropriate outpatient reimbursement. "With Dragon Medical Practice Edition and the EHR, we can generate the medical information that truly reflects the work we do for complex patients. Our level four encounters increased from 3 to 14 percent over a six month period," says Chuck Stillwaggon, Practice Administration Orthopedics Northwest, PLLC, Yakima, WA.
Dragon Medical Practice Edition is fine tuned to identify and understand the unique way clinicians pronounce words, and continuously improves the quality of speech recognition by running language and acoustic optimization software in the background. This enables the voice recognition engine to understand physicians using many different and customized medical terms quickly and accurately. More than 30 new specialty vocabularies are included in this latest version of Practice Edition, supporting more than 90 medical specialties and subspecialty vocabularies in total, which is unparalleled in the industry.
By tapping into Nuance's expertise in mobile devices and physicians' love of mobile phones for their convenience, Dragon Medical Practice Edition now allows clinicians to use their favorite device as a microphone to dictate medical records using an Android-powered smartphone or an Apple iPhone as well as traditional methods, such as PowerMics. With approximately 74 percent of physicians using smartphones for work, this provides physicians more flexibility in choosing how to capture clinical documentation to fit their needs while providing a more comprehensive patient medical record.