Iowa Health Home Care

Healthcare Firm Enhances Operations With Enterprise Content Management Solution

Iowa Health Home Care was struggling with ways to manage huge volumes of paper documents. The company turned to an enterprise content management solution from KnowledgeLake that integrates with Microsoft SharePoint. The solution helps employees locate information much faster than before while enhancing compliance with healthcare regulations and freeing up valuable office space.


Iowa Health Home Care is a full-service home care provider serving patients throughout Iowa. The company focuses on helping people who need ongoing medical care outside the hospital or their doctor’s office, such as help with medical equipment, nursing care, rehabilitation services, or hospice care.

Like most healthcare organizations, Iowa Health Home Care struggles with huge amounts of documentation, from patient medical records and admissions forms to financial records and audit reports. In late 2008, company officials decided to seek a solution to reduce and better control paper documents and related manual processes that were time-consuming and labor intensive. James Fickbohm, Technology Coordinator for Iowa HealthHome Care, says the company was particularly interested in an enterprise content management solution that would integrate into its existing Microsoft SharePoint intranet system.


Iowa Health Home Care provides a range of home-based medical services and equipment to patients throughout Iowa. The company is headquartered in Urbandale, Iowa.

Iowa, United States


“We were looking for a solution that was both powerful and flexible enough to handle simple scanning as well as complex, indexed lookups using optical character recognition [OCR] technology,” he says.

"No other product that we know of offers the elegant simplicity and flexibility of the KnowledgeLake ECM software—and none can do it within the SharePoint environment that our users work in daily."

-James Fickbohm, Technology Coordinator, Iowa Health Home Care


An Iowa Health Home Care team considered an array of technology options,including products from Mobius Management Systems, MedFORCE Technologies, RemitData, and LaserFiche. However, armed with information from the Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM), Iowa Health Home Care decided to implement an enterprise content management (ECM) solution using KnowledgeLake products.

“The other solutions we considered all had significant drawbacks, either in terms of cost or limited functionality,” says Fickbohm. “It made a lot more sense to us to go with KnowledgeLake, which was cost-effective, provided the functionality we needed, and would integrate easily into the SharePoint system.”

Iowa Health Home Care installed KnowledgeLake Capture, which works with scanners to turn paper files into electronic documents, and KnowledgeLake Imaging for SharePoint, which enables fast, easy batch scanning of documents and provides tools for rapid document searches.

Iowa Health Home Care uses the KnowledgeLake software in conjunction with Fujitsu fi6670A sheet fed scanners, which are enterprisescale machines capable of scanning up to 90 pages per minute. Scanned documents are converted into Adobe PDF files.

The company went live with its new KnowledgeLake ECM solution in 2009. Most of the deployment time involved creating the document barcodes that are read by the scanners and contain metadata that is used later for organizing and searching through the documents on the corporate intranet. The company deployed the technology in its medical equipment, medical records, finance, and billing departments.


Integrating the KnowledgeLake ECM technology with the intranet has delivered significant benefits for Iowa Health Home Care. Employees can quickly find documents using the sophisticated search functionality. By keeping electronic records with rich, detailed information, the company can comply with regulations faster and more easily than in the past. And the solution is helping to reduce the amount of space required to store documents. “No other product that we know of offers the elegant simplicity and flexibility of the KnowledgeLake ECM software—and none can do it within the SharePoint environment that our users work in daily,” says Fickbohm.”

Faster Searches

The KnowledgeLake software allows users to catalog scanned documents with rich meta data, which is used by Iowa HealthHome Care employees to quickly search and retrieve information on the company’s intranet.

“A staff member can, for example, rapidly find and view files from anywhere while on the phone with a client—without having to leave her desk to go to some file cabinet on the other side of the building,” says Fickbohm. “The KnowledgeLake software and the built-in OCR technology renders high-quality, easily searchable PDFs. It’s really cool how easily it can find a client’s name in a 50-page file.”

Better Audits and Document Retention

Fickbohm notes that the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and other regulations require Iowa Health Home Care to maintain tight controls over patient information. The KnowledgeLake ECM solution helps in that effort.

“In the paper-based environment, we had difficulty controlling who would really see a medical record,” he says. “With the KnowledgeLake and SharePoint technologies, we can easily perform audits on sensitive content to see not only who is editing files, but who is opening and reading them. It’s also a lot easier to apply document retention policies to electronic files.”

More Office Space

The KnowledgeLake solution is also helping Iowa Health Home Care recover valuable office space.

“We’ve been able to sell many of our now-emptied filing cabinets, and have replaced that empty space with cubicles for employees,” Fickbohm says. “Plus, reducing our dependency on paper work flows and enabling remote access to the intranet will set the stage for more employees to work from home, which we expect to enhance productivity. Using the KnowledgeLake products with the SharePoint system is a match made in heaven for our company.”

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