Why Excelas? The Value Proposition

Eighteen years.  Excelas has been supporting law firms, insurers, and health care organizations through efficient, affordable, and expert medical record organization and analysis for claims, litigation, and compliance for 18 years.  The value of Excelas’ services is obvious to clients, so much so that a long-standing client is now the President of the company.

From the Excelas point of view, Beth Wilson is the perfect fit.  In her most recent role as Senior Counsel for a national healthcare network she was responsible for resolving legal matters for hospitals, skilled nursing, rehabilitation centers, assisted living facilities, home health care, and hospice.  Among her many responsibilities she managed the in-house claims process including the collection and review of medical records, analysis of claims, negotiations of settlements, and the selection and management of outside defense counsel.  She was frequently involved with vendors to support the claims process, including Excelas.

Ms. Wilson shared the factors which guided her decision to join Excelas as the next step in her successful career as both in-house and outside counsel.

  • What prompted your previous organization to utilize Excelas’ services?

My former employer has partnered with Excelas since 2006 to facilitate the cost-effective organization and analysis of medical records for compliance and claims purposes.

Medical Record Organization/Document Management:  Years ago, the documentation primarily consisted of paper records, which were voluminous, difficult to organize in a logical or chronological way, illegible at times, and subject to variations across the business units.  Excelas brought protocols for efficient, cost-effective records management and analysis that anticipated and addressed new technology and other changes in the field.  Excelas has been a leader in implementing sophisticated tools, including proprietary web-based software, for managing hybrid records composed of paper and electronic medical records.

Medical/Nursing Analysis:  Excelas offers a thorough nursing analysis without the costs associated with employing additional support staff or retaining consulting experts.  The experienced analysts stay current on the nursing standard of care as it evolves over time.

  • Describe your prior interactions with Excelas, including work product, customer service and response times.

Excelas has been an extension of the organization’s in-house legal department and a helpful resource for outside defense counsel.  Excelas routinely organizes the medical records and provides a standard of care analysis for in-house claims, facilitates the early review of potential exposure for lawsuits assigned to defense counsel, and assists with various projects as needed.  For instance, helping with large audits and other projects, filling in when support staff are on leave or are tied up with other assignments, and bridging the gap when an employee leaves until the vacant position has been filled.  Excelas provides security with the flexibility of having Excelas’ services “on-demand.”

The negotiated turnaround times for Excelas’ work products provide in-house counsel and defense counsel ample time to evaluate potential liability and defenses, conduct effective interviews, engage in meaningful discovery, explore theories and legal strategies, and pursue early resolution, if appropriate.

Excelas provides customized solutions that are tailored to each client’s needs.  A liaison works closely with all team members to implement written protocols for clear expectations and timely delivery.  Customer service is exceptionally responsive and always professional. The connections that I developed over time led to enduring friendships and ultimately led to the incredible opportunity for me to join Excelas as its President.  When the company’s founder, Jean Bourgeois, invited me to lead this incredible team as part of her succession plan, I couldn’t be more excited.  Together we will guide Excelas into the future with our shared commitment to the core values of integrity, quality, flexibility, accountability, collaboration, and innovation.

  • How did partnering with Excelas change how you deployed your team members?

Excelas enables the other members of the legal team to focus on decision-making and strategy development rather than preparatory tasks.  Excelas takes care of gathering, scanning, sorting, labeling, and summarizing the records.  The medical legal analysts then prepare chronologies and reports that the rest of the team rely on to interview and depose witnesses, draft motions, respond to government entities, retain testifying experts, and mediate, arbitrate, litigate, or settle disputes.

  • How did you measure the ROI?

Increased efficiency: Excelas expedites the delivery of complete, well-organized clinical documentation for surveys, audits, record requests, and discovery; in-house counsel and defense counsel get a head start on defending claims and suits by having Excelas prepare Claims Summaries and Medical Chronologies early in the claims process; the Strengths and Weaknesses Assessments quickly identify defense strategies; the Provider of Care Report identifies potential witnesses and documents for defense counsel to efficiently conduct focused interviews and depositions; and the Care Calendars/Touch Charts are particularly effective demonstrative exhibits for mediations, arbitrations, and trials.  These cost-effective tools give in-house counsel and defense firms a competitive edge in achieving successful outcomes.

Consistent quality: I trusted Excelas’ reports to be consistently thorough and reliable.  Excelas does not eliminate the need for counsel to examine the records and analyze the evidence, but provides a solid framework to expedite the process, saving time and money.

Improved Outcomes: Excelas’ reports analyze the allegations asserted in a claim, suit, or survey, and identify other potential issues apparent from the complete medical record.  This comprehensive review helps counsel develop effective strategies early in the process and avoids the late discovery of adverse information, after the parties have invested considerable time and money in litigating a dispute.

  • Now that you are President of Excelas, what do you see are its strengths in relation to trends in the legal environment moving forward?

Legal Department budgets and staff are being cut, forcing in-house counsel to do more with less.  Excelas offers cost-effective solutions for medical record management and analysis to minimize the overall legal spend while offering customized solutions and non-traditional billing arrangements to supplement the work of in-house counsel and outside firms.

Companies and firms may not be able to hire additional staff and may be reluctant to hire temporary employees due to costs and training requirements.  Excelas has the expertise necessary to jump in to help on short notice, to provide as much help as needed, for as long as it is needed.

Prior to the pandemic, Excelas embraced the remote office concept, thereby reducing overhead and eliminating geographic barriers to attracting and retaining the best staff, while continuing to invest in client-centric technology.

Excelas proactively addressed the impact of pandemic related mandates and restrictions by developing a comprehensive integrated timeline tool (CITT), featuring a database of federal and state guidance from entities including the CDC, CMS, FDA, White House, Office of Civil Rights, National Institutes of Health, OSHA, FEMA, United States Department of Labor, and World Health Organization.  Many of the mandates have been archived or superseded, but Excelas captured this information contemporaneously in a timeline that can be merged with a company’s response to the pandemic as well as a specific patient’s medical record.  This powerful tool is a game-changer for responding to COVID litigation, audits, and investigations.

The struggle to achieve work-life balance has become critically important for employee retention and satisfaction.  Collaborating with Excelas affords attorneys and paralegals the opportunity to be more efficient and focus on intellectually challenging legal aspects of assignments while improving outcomes for their clients.

Companies are focusing on risk management, and there seems to be a trend of increasing risk of criminal exposure for entities and individuals in addition to civil liability and penalties.  Excelas can quickly audit charts and other records to provide counsel with information to assess compliance, defend allegations, or determine the scope and extent of wrongful activity that may have occurred.  In addition to general chronologies or summaries of specific issues, Excelas can quickly identify every place in a record where a provider has documented care and summarize those interactions.

The best testimonial is having a client join the company, and Excelas is thrilled to have Beth Wilson lead the company into the future using the value proposition that has been evident since its founding 18 years ago: efficient, affordable, and expert medical record organization and analysis for claims, litigation, and compliance.

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