As our world becomes more digitized, pen and paper are being replaced with electronic contracts and signatures. Though the way a signature is captured varies based on the system used, electronic signatures, also referred to as E-signatures, are as legally binding as pen and paper signatures. Within the medical world, doctors no longer need to rely on paper prescriptions as they can now forward electronic prescriptions with their digital signatures to pharmacies. Those pharmacies, in turn, can receive electronic signatures from patients when they pick up their prescriptions. Signature capture systems can be aligned with the record keeping within a pharmacy so that reports of all signed transactions are collected in one location.
In our digital world, electronic signature capture for pharmacies not only offer convenience, but they can reduce transaction time, cost of materials, and increase the overall security of personal information.
Benefit #1: Shorter Transaction Time
Electronic signatures make filling prescriptions more efficient. With the click of a mouse, a doctor can sign a prescription and send it to the pharmacy. This creates a digital paper trail that can easily be followed if there is a question about when a prescription was submitted. The pharmacy can then produce their own digital record of patient contact as electronic signatures can then be used for patients to sign off on various types of consent.
Benefit #2: Increased Security
With electronic signatures, there is no need to keep up with piles of prescription slips or customer consents. By keeping signed transactions digital, a pharmacy can decrease the chances of tampering with patient information. Keeping a digital trail of signed transactions can also offer protection for the pharmacy if there is ever a dispute. Capture systems can automatically request electronic signatures from patients in regards to HIPPA, patient counseling, or patient requests regarding a medication. Papers can get lost, but with the proper software, electronic signatures will remain active and logged into the system.
Benefit #3: Reduced Cost and Consumption
The overhead cost of running an efficient pharmacy can add up over time, and pharmacies that are not digitized tend to spend more. By switching to electronic signature capture, pharmacies can cut down on the cost of printing supplies including paper and ink cartridges. This switch can improve costs for the business, but in general, it is a more earth-friendly decision to decrease the amount of waste produced.
In both the business and medical world, electronic signatures are becoming the standard in efficiency and convenience.