When considering the future of healthcare electronic medical records are in the forefront. There is no denying that the EMR is the way all practices will be operating. While the political and patient advocacy reasons for why the EMR is a better way than the traditional paper charting are so huge that virtually no one would argue that EMR is not a great idea, there is a practical side to the actual implementation of an EMR in a practice that must be considered.
Ease of transition is important in looking for an EMR. If an EMR system does not easily transition from your current method of charting into the EMR, the nightmare of missing paperwork or charts insufficiently prepared for billing can be an accounts receivable disaster for any size practice. The electronic medical record that you choose should have a tried and proven plan of operation to transition their product into your system for as seamless of a changeover as possible.
Ease of use falls right into the ease of transition category. A staff or providers being unable to understand and use the EMR properly is another cash flow disaster waiting to happen. As medical providers you know the importance of documentation in the standards of medical billing so the EMR that is best for you will have taken that into consideration. The system itself should be user friendly and the help and training should have a process to ensure that your employees and providers are appropriately trained.
Adaptability to work with other programs that are already being used can be essential. Being able to tap into other existing databases of patient information can save an incredible amount of work required in the transferring of data as well as minimize the chances for data entry error that can cause problems from minor billing issues to major health consequences depending on the type of error made.
Customer support is urgently important when you consider an EMR for your practice. At the end of the day you want to be able to focus on patient care. If you invest in an electronic medical record you do not want to have to become an expert in technology in order to use it. That should be part of the service that you invested in when choosing your EMR. You need an EMR to include a customer support team that takes your practice running smoothly as seriously as you do. They should be available to help with any IT issues anytime that you need them. Doing research with other users of the EMR’s you are considering can me extremely helpful in this regard.
The electronic medical record is the new standard in healthcare and as healthcare providers you will need to make the change. As with any major investment, consider your needs carefully and investigate the companies making promises for your practice. Educate yourself and consider what features are important in an EMR for your practice before deciding on which EMR to go with.