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OCR Scanners and Document Management

Posted on 2011-09-24
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I have been looking at the Neat Receipts and Xerox DocuMate 3115 Document Scanner with Docking Station as some starting points.  I am wanting to scan a lot of papers, about 600 of them right now, into my computer.  These are my medical records and some of them are lab reports.  

I have them scanned already as a TIF / PDF file and I have thought about just hiring someone to enter the data input the data into SmartPHR.  The only problem I see with that right now is no graphing capabilities, but they said they are working on it.  

Any ideas / thoughts on this?  Thank you!
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Question by:coreybryant
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by:John_Arifin
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by:coreybryant
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It looks like I might need to send my information over to them?  I was hoping maybe for a desktop solution for my medical records.
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Joe Winograd, EE MVE earned 400 total points
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Hi Corey,

When you say that you have already scanned them as PDF/TIF files, I'm assuming that they are pure image files and have not been OCR'ed to create text. If that's the case, then a relatively inexpensive desktop solution is PaperPort. It is an excellent desktop product that I've been using for more than 15 years:

http://www.nuance.com/for-individuals/by-product/paperport/index.htm

The latest version is PP14, which just came out on 2-Aug. The main enhancement is cloud support, which you probably don't need. The new version is fairly expensive, but you can get the previous version, which is 12 (yes, they were superstitious and skipped 13), as a download at Newegg for $39.99:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168168677800SF

It can automatically make PDF Searchable Image files, meaning that it automatically invokes built-in OCR to create a layer of text (which you may copy/paste and search!) that resides in the PDF file along with the scanned image. I don't know anything about SmartPHR, but you should be able to copy/paste the text from the PDF Searchable Image file that PaperPort creates into SmartPHR.

The Newegg download is likely to be 12.0. Do not install that. Instead, read my EE article on how to upgrade to 12.1 (free!):

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Web_Development/Document_Imaging/A_6537-PaperPort-Upgrade-How-to-download-and-install-updated-versions-of-PaperPort-11-and-12.html

Btw, what scanner do you have? I'll let you know if it plays nicely with PaperPort. Also, what version/edition of Windows do you have? That may be helpful to know as we brainstorm alternatives.

Disclaimer: I want to emphasize that I have no affiliation with this company and no financial interest in it whatsoever. I am simply a happy user/customer. Regards, Joe
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by:coreybryant
ID: 36893802
Actually, since I had 500 papers (medical records), I went to Staples to scan them.  The "scanner" we have at home is an HP2840 (connected via the Internet) so it does not scan for me (my computer is in another room).

My main concern is trying to get my labs (starting in 2006) into some type of better / readable format.  I thought about entering the lab values through a website that is compatible with MS HealthVault, but none of them really work well with lab values (most just will map cholesterol, BUN, Glucose).  
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by:coreybryant
ID: 36899641
Thanks everyone.  Actually after reviewing Nuance, I ended up purchasing the Dragon Speak as well.  I have not had the chance to fully test the Nuance products but they seem to be very interesting.
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