Managing Data is Critical In Fighting a Pandemic

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Patient is being tested in his vehicle on a drive-through coronavirus COVID-19 testing location. Pandemic, infection

The COVID-19 pandemic has had an impact on nearly every aspect of our society. The right data management solutions are critical in developing a response plan to the virus. One of the most important challenges in the process is the collection of data from patients, physicians and other sources. Companies that have been impacted by COVID-19 directly or by restrictions put in place by the coronavirus pandemic can benefit from the efforts made to collect data on this dangerous disease.

How Data Is Used to Combat COVID-19

In a Washington Post article, Mark Zuckerberg explains the value of data collection in managing COVID-19 and assigning resources to the areas in which they are needed most. The International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD) has also highlighted the importance of data collection in monitoring the spread of the coronavirus and providing actionable information for decision makers.

Key pain points for COVID-19 data collection include the following:

  • Maintaining the privacy of patients in the healthcare environment
  • Delays caused by manual coding and collection of data
  • Time lags for transmitting data
  • The quality and accuracy of the data collected 
  • Inability to visit medical offices in person
  • New technology learning curve

Basics of COVID-19 Data Collection

Some of the most important elements in data collection for the coronavirus pandemic include the following activities:

  • Collecting symptom data
  • Identifying priority patients
  • Testing for COVID-19
  • Tying patient data to individual tests and samples
  • Authenticating data with patients

Healthcare systems who have traditionally required patients to fill out forms manually are now finding that electronic forms are the most practical solutions for linking data directly to the samples and tests collected during the screening process. Our partner, Formstack, has been key in digitizing forms with HIPAA-compliant data for healthcare, nonprofit and government agencies to support the U.S. COVID-19 pandemic response. This article shows how Sling Health, Guthrie, and Mercy Healthcare providers implemented the Formstack solutions.

Managing Pain Points for Data Collection

Finding ways to address pain points for data collection is essential to the success of the efforts currently underway to combat COVID-19.

  • Privacy is one of the most important challenges in data collection related to suspected or actual COVID-19 cases. The HIPAA-compliant electronic forms available from Formstack can ensure that patient data is handled appropriately and in accordance with all provisions of federal and state law. Encrypted transmission, monitoring and audit trails are also required to stay on the right side of HIPAA regulations.
  • Making the move to electronic collection of data is critical for hospitals, clinics and other healthcare providers that are currently using manual forms for patient information. Online forms and questionnaires are especially useful in collecting data on symptoms and processing it as quickly as possible on behalf of patients. This can address both delays caused by manual coding and collection and lags in transmitting data to the appropriate authorities.
  • The data collected must be accurate and complete. By utilizing an automated document generation tool, users are enabled to create simple and complete documents with up-to-date and accurate information. This can go a long way in the data collection process.  E-signature authorizations are necessary to allow the use of this information in battling the coronavirus and determining the next steps in providing support for healthcare activities in the areas hardest hit. Self-service screening and risk assessment can be valuable tools in collecting the largest number of responses and ensuring the accuracy of data during the pandemic and for the future. 

In nearly all these cases, automating the processes and moving to electronic forms and authorizations can address the pain points currently being experienced in some areas of the healthcare industry.

Tools for Fighting the Pandemic

Healthcare providers have created several forms designed specifically to collect the most accurate data from patients and healthcare workers, including the Suspected COVID-19 Patient Intake Form and the General Patient Intake Form. The COVID-19 Self-Declaration Form is intended to provide authorization for monitoring and tracking coronavirus cases within your system. E-signature tools available from Formstack allow faster verification of user identity in a HIPAA-compliant way.

Salesforce is another important tool not only for the healthcare industry but for companies across the United States that have experienced issues caused by the coronavirus. Because the Salesforce platform is cloud-based, it can accommodate inbound requests and can manage self-service resources to make it much easier to share accurate information. This can provide start-to-finish 360-degree support for patients from initial inbound requests to treatment and continuing education and support for their care requirements.

During the current pandemic, Salesforce has been used to scale response efforts for healthcare organizations and to assist companies in managing issues arising from the COVID-19 emergency situation. 

The right data connections do not happen by accident. There is a lot of hard work that goes into planning, implementing, and updating processes to build trust in the data especially when it comes to data that impacts people’s lives. For Salesforce, an experienced, high-quality Salesforce Administrator would ensure data processes are implemented and there is strong trust in the information.

How CRMNinjas Is Responding

CRMNinjas has partnered with Formstack to help the healthcare industry and other companies for integrating forms and data integrity processes in Salesforce.

In conjunction with Salesforce and Formstack, CRMNinjas is delivering the right solutions for businesses to ensure the trust and integrity of data and the appropriate validation for your company’s information. If you would like more information on our current CloudAdmin® service, call us today at 702-248-1033 or drop us a line at [email protected]. You can also visit us online to schedule a meeting with the team at We are here to serve you