Managing my office IT continues to require my time. One of my UPS (Uninterruptible Power Supply) devices failed. The computer crashed.
I called the company, and it turns out that the UPS device I bought can only handle one PC, and I had two PCs at the front connected to it. The voltage was too high. They sent me another UPS, and I connected it to the second PC; it works now. I phoned the company to pay for the second unit, but they won't accept that. I have to ship the other unit back, and then reorder a new unit. That makes no sense to me; I am not a travel agent for UPS devices. I'll just wait a bit and see if the company gets upset at me and allows me to pay for the second unit.
I have a bank branch downstairs at work. I wonder whose responsibility it is to deal with this type of issue there; I would bet that it is not the bank manager's. They also seem to have a huge amount of redundancy, certainly more than what I have. They probably have some very good remote IT support; do they have some in-branch support?
We probably need to think about the minimum level of redundancy in each practice; I have written about this before. Maybe we should have one admin person in each group (FHG, FHN, FHT) whose job it is to become familiar with each practice's IT set-up, and to deal with minor but annoying problems. These problems can become major very quickly if they are not dealt with; the physician is often the IT troubleshooter by default, but I don't think we are the best person for this. It would be good to have the IT administrator monitor each PC periodically to make sure that Windows updates are up to date, and that anti-virus programs are working and are scanning periodically. Computers should be restarted periodically. We were told to install IE 7 on every PC, which has not been done at my office. We should probably have the IT person develop some policies about routine PC maintenance.
I am looking at having a PC in the waiting room to let patients book their own appointments. I've noticed that this is a source of back-ups at the front; my secretary is on the phone, and patients are waiting to book their next appointments. The secretary does not know what time is good for the patient, and the patient can't see my schedule and does not know what times are available. This does not seem like the best booking method.
I've found out how to generate some numbers for my practice. I can generate clinical reports in html format, but this just gives me lists of patients (and not how many patients have a condition). I save these reports, and then open them up in Excel. I then use Data, Sort, and it gives me a number. For example:
All active pts in my practice age 20 and over: 987
code 278 (obesity): 226 pts (I code all BMIs of 30 and over as 278)
250 (diabetes): 95 pts
250 AND 278: 43
9.6% of my pts are diabetic
23% are obese
45% of diabetics are obese
Diabetics in my practice are more likely to be obese than non-diabetics.