Despite major advances in health and medicine in general, is a strange paradox that doctors themselves have been such that late adopters of EMR and medical billing software. Many doctors still use paper medical records, treatment and recording of invoices on paper or with rudimentary UNIX systems, when they could be enjoying the benefits of increased efficiency of current EMR systems, graphical environments.
If you’re a physician, your practice is very likely similar to most every other medical practice in the United States – it’s busy. In fact, “busy” may be a huge understatement in many cases, particularly without EMR software. Consider that everyday (except weekends for lucky practices), a physician may see high numbers of patients, and with each patient there are diagnoses, X-rays, laboratory tests and prescriptions that must be prescribed. It’s enough to drive some doctors insane.
Despite the major advances in healthcare and medicine overall, it’s an odd paradox that doctors themselves have been such late adopters of EMR and medical billing software. Many doctors still use paper medical records, record treatments and bills on paper or with rudimentary UNIX systems, when they could be enjoying the major efficiency advantages of today’s GUI-oriented EMR systems. Recent Federal Government stimulus funds have been focused on providing EMR software to doctors, and the better awareness has led to a stronger installed base. The well-informed doctor knows that all systems are not equivalent however, and needs to realize these crucial EMR points:
Automation – Most credible EMR software products offer a wide variety of easy to use, but efficiency-generating automation benefits. Having an assistant repetitively type out letters should definitely be a distant memory, especially considering the database-to-print automation features available for most EMR software products. Finding the best automation features for your clinic is obviously up to you, but don’t forget to think big – serious vendors can often design features into the system for you, whether they are new or not.
Business Condition Reporting – With the assistance of Federal Stimulus incentives, many medical practitioners have been able to add in a complete practice management system with medical billing to their EMR software. The resulting benefits are massive, as it allows both medical office managers and medical practitioners to get a financial bird’s eye view of their practices. Quality products will often offer templates for several important accounting reports, such as billings and treatment details, but also offer customizable demographic reports. Seeing the billing and cash flow picture in your practice with a simple click should be a feature to seek out with your EMR.
Customizability – Any EMR software vendor who replies to a “Can your software do this…?” query with a “no, not possible” likely isn’t your best choice. It’s software, silly, and the main thing with software is that developers can always stretch the boundaries of their products to where they need to be to satisfy their customers. Be reasonable, of course, but requesting interface changes, specialized electronic medical billing templates and quick-click features for any practice management or EMR application is not too much to ask – this is the scenario where a “yes-man” that executes properly may be your best friend.
Today’s medical practice is tougher to manage than it has ever been. With the healthcare industry constantly growing as patient demographics get older, it is crucial to have the tools you want to not only stay competitive, but to guarantee your patients are served quickly and satisfactorily. Finding an electronic medical records software developer that fits right will help you do this.
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