With the release of Therap 8.9.3 today we have added more functionality to help agencies work with their regulators and achieve compliance with electronic signature rules around the county.  This is another example of functionality developed in conjunction with our users at the Provider Administration Conference.

As many of you know, this is a slightly moving target and one we continue to monitor and work with.

Therap’s latest feature allows you to mandate that staff acknowledge a policy or statement before logging into the system (see below for instructions).  One suggestion is that you have your staff acknowledge that by entering data in Therap they understand that they are electronically signing those documents.  You can choose if they acknowledge once or every time they log into the system.

We based this is a number of documents, including New York State’s Electronic Signatures and Records Act (ESRA) Guidelines quoted below.

3.2.3 Overview of the Business and Legal Function of a Signature
A signature can serve the following business and legal purposes:
  1. Demonstrate intent: A signature identifies the signer and signifies that the signer understood and intended to carry out whatever was stipulated in the document.
  2. Authentication and approval: A signature authenticates a document by linking the signer with the signed document. A signature may also express the signer’s approval or authorization of the document and what it contains, and his or her intent that it has legal effect. The signature provides evidence that the signer really did something and actually saw and approved a particular document at the time of signing.
  3. Security: A signature is often used to protect against fraud, impersonation, or intrusion. For instance, to a limited degree the signature on a check is a form of security because drafting an unauthorized check often requires forging a signature. A signature on a document often imparts a sense of clarity and finality to the transaction and may lessen the subsequent need to inquire beyond the face of a document.
  4. Ceremony: The act of signing warns or puts the signer on notice that he or she may be making a legally binding commitment. The signature will show that a meaningful act occurred when the person approved the document. A signature should force the person to deliberate over the document and become aware of its significance before making it final.

Therap achieves these by:

  1. By having staff sign off on your statement of intent and/or electronic use/signature policy.
  2. Therap’s electronic signature on each page is tied to the user though our three-part log in
  3. Therap’s extensive physical, software, hardware, and network security along with the prevention of direct user access to the data protect your signature.  This combined with update and activity tracking ensure that you know exactly who does what in your system.
  4. Therap has affirmative save, submit, approve and other buttons on pages.

To create a new Acknowledgment Page, go to Administration Mode and click “New” next to “Signup Agreement”.

Screenshot of Signup Agreement on dashboard

You can then create your page and decide whether your staff need to sign just once or every time that they log in.  You will notice that there is also a report here to get a list of who has acknowledged your agreement.

Screenshot of Signup Agreement

Now, users signing into your account with have to click I agree or they will be taken back to the Login Page:

Screenshot of Electronic Signature Intent

Of course, while this was designed with Electronic Signatures in mind, you could use the page to have staff sign off on other policies or agreements.

Let me know what you think

:: Justin :