German clinic relies on RPA

Hospital processes are sensitive and highly regulated, but often still manually performed and error-prone. Robotic process automation (RPA) helps hospitals to massively accelerate and improve their processes. Professor Schmitz-Winnenthal, chief physician at the Klinikum Aschaffenburg-Alzenau hospital, is showing how: As a pioneer in automation, the surgeon implemented robotic process automation. This takes the pressure off hospital staff – and simplifies and improves patient care.

With the help of digitalization and automation, hospitals can significantly reduce high administrative costs. For example, with robotic process automation technology. Professor Schmitz-Winnenthal, Chief Physician at the Klinikum Aschaffenburg-Alzenau medical center, is proof of this. The surgeon and professor is a digital mastermind and pioneer in the field of process automation in hospitals.

With more than 2,500 employees and 730 beds, Klinikum Aschaffenburg-Alzenau is one of the largest hospitals in Bavaria, Germany. With 20 certified clinics and institutes, the hospital provides health care to the region.

RPA in hospital: less administration, more patient care 
Professor Schmitz-Winnenthal wanted to use the possibilities of digitalization to optimize workflows and processes in everyday hospital life. His goals: to relieve the staff and improve work with and for patients. He soon came across a modern technology called robotic process automation. For his evaluation, the professor spoke with various consultants and intensively examined the RPA products available on the market.

The two most important findings:

1) Due to the special features and requirements in the healthcare and hospital sector, the hospital decided to implement RPA independently, without external consultants.

2) Many of the typical RPA solutions are not suitable for use in hospitals or even as medical devices, due to the high compliance and security standards.

The XceleratorOne (X1) automation platform from Servicetrace is an exception. The core of the X1 platform is a unique, holistic lifecycle management concept, which enables the use of RPA in sensitive hospital areas and is also very secure.

I have looked at many RPA solutions very closely, including those from the major American providers. Servicetrace has really taken a unique and very successful approach with the X1 platform and integrated lifecycle management. This has many advantages, especially in the medical sector.

Prof. Hubertus Schmitz-Winnenthal | Chief Physician at Klinikum Aschaffenburg-Alzenau  

After the approval from hospital management, Klinikum Aschaffenburg-Alzenau therefore opted for X1. In a next step, the hospital created the dedicated expert position of RPA programmer. This role acts as a small “Center of Excellence”, so to speak. The position bundles and consolidates the knowledge about RPA, internal processes, and the X1 platform, and also supports other departments and employees with the introduction of RPA.

RPA in Hospitals: Interview

Hospital digitalization: RPA improves ward and patient management 
Doctors and nursing staff need a precise overview of the patient situation in the ward at all times. In concrete terms, this means: Who is in which ward bed with which diagnosis, and what treatment and care do they need?

The ward list therefore records the following relevant patient data:

  • Name, date of birth, age
  • Main diagnosis
  • OR procedure
  • Laboratory values
  • Infection status
  • Care index

With the help of the X1 platform, the hospital can generate the list of wards automatically and keep it highly up-to-date for the first time. To do this, X1 accesses the ORBIS hospital information system and other internal systems several times a day and collects the necessary data. X1 then aggregates this data according to the specifications and produces a highly up-to-date list of wards and patients for doctors and nursing staff. The result is faster and better patient care. The ward list simplifies ward rounds, the check-in of new patients, and shift handovers.

The advantages of the automatically generated ward list for hospital staff:

  • Faster registration and admission of new patients
  • Up-to-date overview of the ward and its patients
  • Faster recording of the patient’s condition
  • Faster and better treatment thanks to clear information
  • Increase of the quality of the station list by reducing errors, e.g. from handwritten information
  • More efficient communication, e.g. for patient rounds and handover at shift changes

I am very excited about the RPA X1 platform. The Design Studio for the development of the automation sequence is built on a drag-and-drop principle and is really easy to learn. The platform maps the complete lifecycle of RPA, letting me always access individual steps and phases and switch back and forth. This makes automation really fun.

Paulina Rack, RPA citizen developer at Klinikum Aschaffenburg-Alzenau

Automation in hospitals: three fewer working days per month thanks to RPA
As one of the first processes, the RPA team at the hospital automated a monthly reporting process in Human Resources (HR). The XceleratorOne platform handles the reconciliation and validation of data in a 500-page PDF. From the very large document, X1 regularly generates department-specific reports that are updated daily. The result: An HR employee previously needed three full working days per month for this monotonous data reconciliation task, which is now performed completely automatically within ten hours by the software robots of the X1 platform.

The process in detail:

Monthly creation of employee reporting for departmental time recording

X1 Bot generates individual PDF reports (approx. 500 pages) from the 14 overall reports issued by SPX

X1 Bot stores the reports sorted by department and makes them available for team time recording

⏱️ Time expenditure: three working days per month manually vs. ten hours for the X1 Bot

Following these initial automation successes, the hospital is continuing to push the use of RPAs. The next RPA projects are already in the pipeline in both HR and Controlling.

Sources and further links


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Download PDF: RPA for Hospitals

>> Read full interview with surgeon and RPA pioneer Professor Hubertus Schmitz-Winnenthal:

RPA in Hospitals: Interview