Friday, April 25, 2014

Plustek Healthcare Scanning Solutions – Selecting a Scanner for Patient Registration Areas

Selecting a scanning solution for your patient registration area is a project that requires careful consideration.  This guide will help you select the best scanner for your patient registration area.  Your office staff will scan many registration documents and IDs each day.  It’s important to select an efficient solution for your office.

Conditions that influence your selection are:
Patient registration workflow.
Amount of registration desk space available for a scanner.
Do you need to scan documents or just ID cards?
Does the scanning solution need to interface to your practice management system?
How long will it take to scan registration documents for each patient?

Registration Workflow:
If your workflow requires that you load all the registration documents into a scanner at once and then press a SCAN button, your alternatives are limited and you need to choose a scanner with an Automatic Document Feeder (ADF).  Plustek SmartOffice series scanners all have ADFs that let you load all your documents and ID cards into the feeder at the same time.  Advanced image processing automatically straightens and crops documents and cards so there is no need to sort and scan by physical document size.   Automatic rotation will rotate documents to the correct orientation if you accidentally load a document upside down.

The Plustek SmartOffice PS286+ (25 pages per minute) and the SmartOffice PS456U (80 pages per minute) are good choices if you need a scanner with an ADF.  Both of these scanners can scan documents and ID cards in the same batch.  You simply load all your documents in the feeder and start scanning.

Plustek SmartOffice PS456U
Plustek SmartOffice PS286+

A drawback of any ADF scanner is that it takes up a lot of registration desk space and many times, the ADF mechanism causes the scanner to be more expensive.  If your workflow permits you to load and scan ID cards and documents one at a time, consider a sheet fed scanner.  Sheet fed scanners are much smaller than ADF scanners and only take up a minimal amount of desk space.

Plustek D430
The Plustek D430 is a fast, small foot print, sheet fed scanner.  It costs less than most ADF scanners and it can scan both sides of an ID card in about 1.5 seconds and both sides of a 8.5 x 11” document in about 2.5 seconds.

Registration desk space:
Registration desks are crowded and there isn’t a lot of extra space available to install a scanner.  Most Plustek scanners have a very small footprint.  In fact the sheet fed Plustek D430 is only 12” L x 4” D x 2” H and can be placed right up against an office wall.

If you have limited registration desk space and you need a scanner with an automatic document feeder, the Plustek SmartOffice PS286+ is a good choice.  This 25 page per minute scanner has only uses 10" L x 5" D x 6" H of desk space.

Plustek SmartOffice PS286+

What if I am only scanning insurance and ID cards?
If you are only scanning insurance and ID cards at your registration desk, your selection process is easier.   A card and ID scanner like the Plustek MobileOffice S601 is an ideal choice.

MobileOffice S601

The MobileOffice S601 is only slightly larger than an ID card and will scan rigid and embossed cards up to 1.24mm thick and documents up to 4 x 6” in size.  This small scanner is powered by your computers USB port so you don’t need to have extra power wires cluttering your registration area.

Integration with Practice Management or Health Records Systems:
In most cases, your scanner will need to interface with another system such as a practice management or electronic health records system.  Most of these systems use a method of communicating with scanners called TWAIN.  If you need this connectivity, you must select a scanner that has TWAIN drivers.

All Plustek scanners include industry standard TWAIN drivers.  The TWAIN drivers enable easy integration with almost any scanner enabled practice management or electronic health records system.    An added benefit of Plustek scanners is that they have single touch scanning in addition to TWAIN drivers.

Single touch scanning even adds more value to your scanner by enabling you to scan to email, folder or even use your scanner as a copier simply by pressing a button on the scanner.   In many cases, you can use single touch scanning to scan directly to your practice management or health records systems.

How much time does it take to scan documents for one patient?
The amount of time you want your office staff to spend scanning is important to consider.

When you use a sheet fed scanner, each page or ID must be inserted into the scanner one at a time.  The time to scan each item can be as low as 1.5 seconds, but it takes a few seconds to load and unload each item.  Benefits of using a sheet fed scanner like the Plustek D430 is that they take up less desk space and they are less expensive than a scanner with an ADF.

A faster alternative is to use an ADF scanner where you can load all of a patients registration documents and their ID in the scanner at one time.  A scanner like the Plustek SmartOffice PS456U will scan an id card and 4 pages of registration documents in less than 5 seconds

What are the costs?
A sheet fed scanner like the Plustek D430 will cost less than $400 while an ADF scanner will cost between $400 and $800.  A more expensive scanner is typically faster, has a feeder that can hold more pages and has a higher daily duty cycle.

For more information on scanning in the healthcare vertical, visit the Plustek healthcare portal:

Thursday, April 10, 2014

EMR Implementations Strategies – On Demand Patient Record Scanning

The Healthcare Reform Act makes $36 billon available to healthcare practitioners to create a nationwide network of electronic health records (EHR).  Each practice is entitled to $44,000 if the spending meets guidelines for meaningful use.

The first step in converting to EHR is selecting a software package that meets your practices needs.   With over an estimated 300 EHR solutions on the market, choosing a solution for your practice can be a daunting task.  You will need to decide if you want software that will run on one of your servers or a cloud based solution.  There are benefits to either type of solution. If you do not have the expertise in house to select a solution appropriate for your needs, consult with your IT provider to assist you with the selection process.

During the implementation process, your practice has to plan for dealing with huge volume of the existing patient’s records. Do you need a production scanner for that? The answer for most small to medium practices is NO.  Your day forward scanning requirements may not justify the cost of an expensive production scanner.  Day forward scanning typically consists of Consent Forms, Patient Records, Lab Results, Physician Notes, Point of Care Patient Notes, Clinical Data, Medical Orders, and Patient Narratives.  A production scanner is overkill for scanning this smaller volume of documents.

Here are a few alternatives to purchasing an expensive production scanner for back file conversion:

Scanning Service Bureau:
The easiest way to scan existing patient records is to outsource scanning to a scanning service bureau.  However, this alternative is also the most costly.  Typical costs run between 5 to 15 cents per page plus shipping costs to and from the service bureau. If you need additional services such as scanning of patient folders to capture the marks or notes on the cover or document reconstruction, the costs will be much higher.  If you require that the service bureau scan the documents at your site the costs will even be higher yet.

Even if you hire Scanning Service Bureau, you will still need to purchase a scanner for your day forward scanning. It seems outsourcing scanning may be not a good choice for most small to medium practices due to:

  • High cost.
  • You may pay to scan patient records that may never need to be retrieved.

On Demand Patient Records Scanning:
Another alternative is to scan existing patient records only when you need them. We call this On Demand Patient Records Scanning.  With this alternative, you only scan patient records when the patient schedules a visit or arrives at your office.  You can scan their records once they make appointments or during the registration process or even after they finish their visit.

For On Demand Patient Records Scanning you can use a high speed document scanner such as Plustek SmartOffice SC8016U (A3/Tabloid Size) or Plustek PS 456U (A4/Letter Size).  Both are inexpensive scanners and capable of scanning 80 page per minute.  Both of these scanners have an 8000 page per day duty cycle to meet your daily On Demand Patient Records Scanning needs.

The key to the success of your EMR implementation is to choose right tools for the job.  The software must meet your requirements and the scanner must have excellent paper handling and image quality.  An added benefit of choosing a Plustek scanner is that they are cost effective and offer a lot of value.  In fact, the Plustek SmartOffice PS456U and SmartOffice SC8016U were awarded Best Value award by Buyers Labs.

Plustek recommends the following scanners for your healthcare scanning tasks:

Plustek SmartOffice SC8016U –A Buyers Labs best value award winner. It is an ideal scanner for On Demand Patient Records Scanning for a medium sized practice.  This 80 page per minute scanner can scan up to 8000 pages per day and scan as large as an 11X17” ledger sized page such as folder cover or charts.
Plustek SmartOffice SC8016U

Plustek SmartOffice PS456U -  An page per minute scanner with a 60 sheet feeder.  It is also a Buyers Labs best value award winner.  It is a good choice for day forward scanning or On Demand Patient Records scanning when a low quantity of documents will be scanned each day.
Plustek SmartOffice PS456U

Plustek D430 – The ideal scanner for registration areas and pharmacies.  Its small footprint doesn’t take up a lot of desk space.  The D430 will scan both sides of a card in about 1 second and both sides of a registration document in less than 2 seconds.  The ergonomic design enables easy card and paper loading.
Plustek D430

For more information on the Plustek SmartOffice PS456, SC8016U and D430 scanners, visit

Friday, February 28, 2014

Plustek SmartOffice PS456U 80 ppm document scanner demonstration

Check out the Plustek SmartOffice PS456U 80 ppm document scanner. It's ideal for document management, healthcare, forms processing, pharmacy and any scanning application where high speed and a high daily duty cycle are needed.

It's also priced under $900! 

For more info, visit:

Monday, February 3, 2014

On Demand Patient Records Scanning - Scanning Existing Patient Records During an EHR Transisiton

When you convert your practice to use Electronic Medical Records (EMR), one of the many items you will need to consider is how to get existing patient records into your EMR system.  A few alternatives are:

  • Send your patient records to a service bureau for scanning.
  • Contract with a service bureau to scan your old patient records on site.
But another alternative is to scan the records yourself, at your site, as the records are needed.   

New scanners like the 80 page per minute Plustek SmartOffice PS456U and SmartOffice SC8016U make scanning these records easy and cost effective.  

Plustek SmartOffice SC8016U

When a patient comes into the office and your office staff pulls their records, they can remove all the pages from the patient's record folder and drop it into the scanner.  To start the scanning, it is a simple process of either pressing a button on the scanner or starting the scanning from your EMR software.

These scanners can scan a patient folder in less than a minute in most cases.  The SmartOffice SC8016U can also scan the patients folder thanks to it's A3 (also known as ledger or tabloid) size paper handling.

Using this methodology, patient records are scanned and input into the EHR system only when they are needed.  In most cases, these records can be scanned when the patient arrives at the office.  Cost and effort are minimized because only the patient records that are needed are scanned.

To learn more about how Plustek scanners are used in healthcare, visit or give us a call at 714-670-7713 or drop us an email:

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Plustek’s SmartOffice SC8016U Document Scanner Wins Outstanding Achievement Award From Buyers Laboratory

Press Release

For more information, please contact:
Mark Druziak

Plustek’s SmartOffice SC8016U Document Scanner Wins Outstanding Achievement Award From Buyers Laboratory

SmartOffice SC8016U Honored for Its Value

SANTA FE SPRINGS, Calif. (January 15, 2014) – Plustek Technology Inc. (, a manufacturer of scanners and network video recorders, announced today its Plustek SmartOffice SC8016U document scanner won an Outstanding Achievement Award for “Value” from Buyers Laboratory Inc. (BLI).

“Once again Plustek brings significant value to the high-end scanner category by offering the robust feature set and fast speeds of a production unit for the price of an everyday workgroup scanner,” said Lisa Reider, BLI’s senior product editor for scanners. “Plustek’s excellent pricing on the SmartOffice SN8016U helps to bring fast, efficient scanning to virtually any price-conscious office environment looking to amplify their capture capabilities.

The Plustek SmartOffice SC8016U  is an A3 (tabloid) sized 80 page-per-minute, duplex color document scanner that is fast, reliable and cost effective.  Its ultrasonic misfeed detection ensures all documents are imaged correctly.  Robust paper handling, advanced image processing and a 8000 page per day daily duty cycle make the scanner ideal for departmental, back office and production scanning for document management, content management and forms processing applications.  For more information, please visit:

Key Points from Buyers Laboratory testing:
Faster than average single-page black-and-white and grayscale speeds, and has virtually no speed slowdown in black-and-white mode when increasing the resolution from 200 dpi to 300 dpi.
Higher than average OCR accuracy results for all documents tested
Smaller than average storage footprint
Based on its lower than average price and very good overall performance, BLI highly recommends the SN8016U for document-intensive departments looking for an affordable and robust high-speed scanner.

More information can be found on the Buyers Labs website:

Key Features:
Scans documents up to A3 (tabloid) sized
Scan to Searchable PDF with the touch of a button
Scan speed up to 80ppm/160ipm
Scans plastic cards, insurance cards, license cards, and business cards up to 1.2mm
100 page ADF capacity
8,000 page-per-day duty cycle
Single touch scanning
Automatic advanced image enhancement
Ultrasonic multi-feed detection
TWAIN, ISIS and WIA drivers

For over 45 years, Buyers Laboratory (BLI) has been the leading source for unbiased and reliable intelligence for the imaging industry.  BLI is completely independent in all of our testing processes and subsequent reporting.  BLI provides unbiased data and information.  All of its product evaluations are conducted by highly experienced employees in on-site testing facility where they evaluate and report on hundreds of new copier, printer, fax and multi-function products each year.

A scanner and security device manufacturer, Plustek is ISO 9002 certified (since 1986) and operates in more than 20 counties around the word. For more information, please visit

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Thursday, December 19, 2013

Plustek to Exhibit at CES 2014

Press Release

For more information, please contact:
Mark Druziak

Plustek Unveils Its 2014 Scanner and Surveillance Product Lines At CES 2014

LAS VEGAS, Consumer Electronics Show [Booth South 4, #35321] (Dec 19, 2013) – Plustek Technology Inc. (, a manufacturer of document, book and photographic scanners; and cost effective Network Video Recorders for Edge Recording in the surveillance market,  will exhibit a full line of new products at the 2014 International Consumer Electronic Show (CES) at the Las Vegas Convention Center.  

Reinforcing its commitment the document, photo, film scanning and surveillance markets, Plustek will display 3 new scanners and 2 new Network Video Recorders (NVR).

Scanning products Plustek will display for the first time at CES include: SmartOffice SC8016U, an 80 ppm A3 sized document scanner with a 100 sheet feeder and 8000 page per day duty cycle; SmartOffice PS456U, an 80 ppm A4 sized document scanner with a 60 sheet feeder and a 6000 page per day duty cycle; OpticSlim 1180, and A3 tabloid sized flatbed scanner.

Video surveillance products Plustek will announce at CES include: NVR X840s and X880s affordable, standalone network video recorders designed for small business surveillance applications.  These NVRs feature megapixel cameras at 720p and 1080p resolutions and include an easy installer utility to simplify installation.   Users can install any 3.5” SATA drive to customize storage capacity to meet their needs.

Other scanner products on display will be the previously launched: OpticFilm 120 and OpticFilm 8200i Ai film and slide scanners; MobileOffice D430 document and card scanner that is ideal for patient registration and pharmacies.  All Plustek SmartOffice and MobileOffice scanners include a suite of document management applications, TWAIN drivers, single touch button scanning, and scan to PDF.  In addition, APIs are available to authorized system integrators.

Plustek Security will also showcase its ruggedized edge NVR, DVR and video encoders.  

The 2014 International CES will be held January 7-10th in Las Vegas, Nevada. For more information, visit: Members of the press interested in a briefing at the Plustek [booth South 4, #35321] should contact Johnson Yang at 714.391.1069. 

A scanner and security device manufacturer, Plustek is ISO 9002 certified (since 1986) and operates in more than 20 counties around the word. For more information, please visit 

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Tuesday, December 3, 2013

I just got a film and slide scanner but I don't know what to do with it!

If you just picked up an OpticFilm slide scanner on a Black Friday deal, congratulations!  (Don't worry you didn't, there is still time: Plustek Black Friday Deals.)

If you don't know how to start your scanning project, you have come to the right place.  First start off by reading through our three part series: Planning Your Film and Slide Scanning Project

Planning your film and slide scanning project - Part 1
Planning your film and slide scanning project - Part 2
Planning your film and slide scanning project - Part 3

Next see our guides for completing your first scan and batch scanning:

Quick Start Guide to your first scan.
Quick Start Guide for batch scanning.

For many other slide scanning tips, including using Automatic exposure, dust and scratch removal, choosing the best resolution to scan and more, visit the Plustek blog.

If you are still stuck after reading through this material, give our tech support experts a call at 714-670-7713, they are there to help!

Friday, November 22, 2013

Scanning Documents to PDF Format

Document and flatbed scanners can save scans in many different formats.
Examples are:

  • BMP
  • PNG
  • TIF
  • JPG
  • PDF
  • Searchable PDF
But what format should you choose for your scans?  BMP, PNG, TIF and JPG formats are ideal if you are scanning photos or artwork, but if you are scanning documents, you really should consider saving to PDF or Searchable PDF.

Why use PDF for scanning documents?
For starters, PDF is an acronym for Portable Document Format.  That's a good clue that it's useful for scanning documents!  As you probably know, PDF files can be read on any computer including PCs, Macs, Linux, Unix machines.  It also can be read by just about all mobile devices including smart phones, tablets and e-readers.  PDF files are also usable with all cloud storage and file sharing solutions like:, Dropbox, Google Drive and more.  So a PDF file is truly portable.  You can view your scanned documents on all of your devices from anywhere.

What is the difference between PDF and Searchable PDF?
While PDF documents are very useful, Searchable PDF documents are even more useful.  

A PDF document is basically a "picture" of the scanned document.  It looks just like the original, and in many ways, it acts just like the original. You can quickly browse thru a document, flip pages etc.  But what if you want to find a certain word, number or phrase in the document?  With a paper document you use your eyes to scan the pages until you find what you are looking for.  You also need to use your eyes to look for information with a PDF document.  It can be very difficult to find important information by looking through a document this way.  This is where Searchable PDF excels.

With a Searchable PDF document, you can use the power of your computer, tablet or smart phone to find the exact words, phases and numbers you are looking for by simply typing what you are looking for in the search box.

Scanning to Searchable PDF
Scanning to Searchable PDF takes a little longer than scanning to a standard PDF.  Your computer must use an Optical Character Recognition (OCR) program that is built into the scanning program to identify all of the characters on the document.  But the ability to search inside of your document makes this extra time worthwhile.

All Plustek SmartOffice document scanners and MobileOffice portable document scanners make it easy to scan to Searchable PDF.  We pre-program our DocAction push button scanning to scan to PDF automatically.  To scan to Searchable PDF, simply open the Button Configuration and select Searchable PDF from the dropdown lists.  We include Abbyy Finereader OCR program free of charge with all of our SmartOffice and MobileOffice scanners to ensure accurate character recognition

For more information on Plustek scanners, visit us on the web at or send us an email:

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Plustek Black Friday Scanner Deals Start TODAY!

Lowest prices of the year on Plustek document and film/slide scanners.

SANTA FE SPRINGS, Calif. (November 17, 2013) – Plustek Technology Inc. (, a manufacturer of imaging and security devices, today announced end of year deals on many of their most popular document, mobile, book and film/slide scanners.

Deals expiring 11/30:
MobileOffice D412 - 12-ppm duplex portable USB powered scanner: $40 instant rebate
SmartOffice PL1530 - 15-ppm duplex ADF + flatbed document scanner:  $50 instant rebate
OpticFilm 8100 - Dedicated 35mm film scanner: $60 instant rebate
OpticFilm 8200i Ai - 35mm film & slide scanner with IR dust and scratch removal:  $90 instant rebate
OpticFilm 8200i SE- 35mm film & slide scanner with IR dust and scratch removal: $70 instant rebate

Deals expiring 12/31:
MobileOffice S400 - 3-ppm portable document scanner: $10 instant rebate
MobileOffice S420 - 12-ppm portable document scanner: $30 instant rebate
MobileOffice AD450 - 9-ppm portable ADF document scanner: $50 instant rebate
OpticBook 3800 - A4-sized book scanner: $30 instant rebate
SmartOffice PS406 – 40-ppm duplex ADF document scanner: $50 instant rebate

These deals are available from authorized Plustek Value-Added Resellers and on-line resellers.
Including Adorama, Amazon, B&H Photo Video, CDW, Newegg, PC Nation, Samy’s Camera, Vistek and others.

Visit for product information.

A scanner and security device manufacturer, Plustek is ISO 9002 certified (since 1986) and operates in more than 20 counties around the word.


Thursday, November 7, 2013

Great year end deals on Plustek scanners available NOW!

Plustek is offering some great end of year deals on many of our most popular document, mobile, book, film and slide scanners!

Deals expiring 11/16:
SmartOffice PS286 Plus - 25ppm duplex ADF document scanner $15 instant rebate.
OpticFilm 8100 - dedicated 35mm film scanner $50 instant rebate
OpticFilm 8200i Ai - 35mm film & slide scanner, IR dust and scratch removal $60 instant rebate
OpticFilm 8200i SE- 35mm film & slide scanner, IR dust and scratch removal $50 instant rebate

Deals expiring 12/31:
MobileOffice S420 - 12 ppm portable document scanner $30 instant rebate.
MobileOffice S400 - 3 ppm portable document scanner $10 instant rebate.
OpticBook 3800 - A4 sized book scanner $30 instant rebate.
SmartOffice PS406 - 40 ppm duplex ADF document scanner $50 instant rebate.
MobileOffice AD450 - 9 ppm portable ADF document scanner $50 instant rebate.

MobileOffice AD450 $50 instant rebate
SmartOffice PS406 $50 instant rebate

Plustek OpticFilm Scanners - $50 to $60 instant rebates

These deals are available from all on-line retailers and all Plustek authorized Value Added Resellers.

For more information on these and other Plustek scanners, visit the Plustek website , call  714-670-7713 or send an email to