Goodbye File Cabinet, Hello Database: Massage Clinic Goes Paperless
Published on July 1, 2013 by Scott Rudeen
Where did that file go? Oh yeah, it is buried under all the other paperwork. Although technology has become an intricate part of our lives, paper is still the method of recording for many organizations. Students in the Broadview University-Layton massage therapy program hold massage clinics to gain hands-on experience as part of their education. Currently the program relies on a file cabinet with folders and is totally paper based. All student and client information is written on paper forms and is filed away under lock and key. Sound familiar?
The Database Design class in the information technology program took on the tremendous task of not just designing a database as their service learning project, but creating a near-commercial quality database application for the massage therapy students’ massage clinic.
By moving the program to a secure electronic version of their file cabinet, all information can be recorded into an instantaneously searchable database. All client medical history; subjective, objective, assessment, plan (SOAP) notes; as well as contact information can now be stored and searched in the database. This affords the instructors, students, and front desk to have all relevant information readily available to schedule/modify appointments.
Dr. Mark Smith, information technology program chair, said, “Though the application was created for the massage program at Broadview, the quality of the user interface forms and reports, the tight relationship among the internal tables, and overall flow are on par with software products retailing for several thousand dollars.”
Kelley Sloan, executive program chair of massage, is extremely excited to begin using the new database and stated, “Can’t wait to get started using the program and working out the kinks.”
According to Kelley, the massage students will become more valuable in the workplace by having experience with an electronic system versus the antiquated paper based system.
As noted by Sean Mendoza, student team leader, “The social benefit is that students will be able to focus more on their interaction with clients and less on having to deal with all sorts of paperwork. They will no longer spend extra time sorting through files to find what they need and can use that time to focus on their clients’ massage and care.”
Another student, Mark Joesten, said, “It was a learning experience for all of us. We had to learn to work in a team, and for a client, and how to be creative.”
Dr. Smith noted how much the students learned about needs analysis and interpreting the client’s requirements into a well-designed application. The students worked well together and were professional in their client consultations. Most importantly, the students experienced bona fide real-world work while contributing to a worthwhile cause – helping fellow students in another program.
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Submitted by Mark Smith, informational technology program chair, Broadview University-Layton