Just Associates Celebrates a Decade of Mastering Patient Identity, Improving Data Integrity

CENTENNIAL, Colo. – June 18, 2012 – Just Associates, Inc., a consulting firm specializing in data integrity and data quality solutions for healthcare organizations, is celebrating a decade of delivering to hospitals and healthcare organizations the innovative services and solutions that drive quality care by mastering patient identity and improving data integrity.

Established in 2002 by Beth Just, the consulting firm is dedicated to meeting the data integrity needs of the health information exchange (HIE), health information management (HIM), health informatics and health IT markets. Launched at a time when enterprise master patient index (EMPI) systems were just starting to appear on the market and adoption of clinical information systems was limited, Just and her small team of passionate professionals recognized the impact duplicate and overlaid patient records would have on the efficacy of these systems.

“We realized early on that EMPI, EHR and other clinical information systems could not deliver the promised quality, safety and efficiency outcomes if data integrity was compromised,” said Just, MBA, RHIA, FAHIMA, the firm’s president and CEO. “These systems also lacked the sophisticated algorithms to accurately match inbound data with existing patient information, which exacerbated the situation by facilitating creation of new duplicates.”

Armed with deep experience in master patient index (MPI) cleanups, technical sophistication and a passion for providing high-quality services that deliver superior value, Just Associates quickly established itself as a leader in MPI management. Over the past 10 years, it has grown to include more than 70 highly trained professionals and amassed a client list that includes many of the nation’s most prestigious healthcare institutions.

“We have experienced firsthand Just Associates’ dedication and exceptional customer service,” said Barb Manor, MA, RHIA, senior director of HIM, Sisters of Charity of Leavenworth Health System. “They tackle every challenge with determination, peeling back the layers to find and eradicate the source of data integrity issues. They also design innovative, long-term solutions and governance processes to ensure that the data we rely on to provide our patients with safe, high-quality care remain uncompromised. They have earned their reputation as an industry leader.”

The firm works with nearly every vendor solution and delivers services encompassing every aspect of data integrity, including MPI cleanup, data migration, and patient access training and consulting. Other services include HIE and EMPI consulting, such as requirements definition, testing, record linking and matching, data mapping, cleanup and maintenance. Software vendors turn to Just Associates for its expertise in optimizing record-matching algorithm performance.

Most recently, Just Associates launched IDMaster®, its proprietary duplicate record workflow software. It also pioneered outsourced MPI management with Repair™, its customized patient identity management service that provides hospitals with a more efficient duplicate record resolution process that overcomes staffing and other resource challenges. Business intelligence tools also identify areas of weakness where additional education or process adjustments can help prevent duplicate creation on the front end.

“We uncover the root causes of data integrity issues and provide guidance on the governance necessary to ensure it stays that way,” said Just.

Maintaining data integrity is more complex and critical now than it was a decade ago, thanks to the increased prevalence of computerized physician order entry (CPOE), EHR, EMPI and other clinical information systems. As more of these systems are interfaced, higher volumes of data flow between patient records and clinical, administrative and financial systems. An error at any point quickly snowballs as the information travels from one system to the next.

“It’s not just a domino effect. It’s exponential. Inaccurate data captured in one system can feed into as many as 50 others before it is detected … if it ever is detected,” said Just. “That is why Just Associates continues pushing its clients to higher levels of data integrity by delivering the innovative services necessary to ensure the information upon which care decisions are based is accurate, regardless of where it enters the system.”

About Just Associates, Inc.

A recognized leader in health information data integrity and management, Just Associates, Inc. (www.justassociates.com) is a healthcare data integration consulting firm that delivers superior value to its clients through improved data integrity. Just Associates has the process expertise and systems knowledge to deliver tailored, value-added solutions that improve clients’ financial outcomes and business processes, support delivery of quality patient care, and meet the expectations of diverse stakeholders through improved data integrity.