New Practice Billing Toolbox Series 2 of 4: How to choose an EHR
Choose an EHR that is user-friendly
Choose an EHR that automates patient registration
Choose an EHR that can produce valuable data so you can run the business
Choose an EHR that is budget-friendly
Running a private practice in the current century requires the use of an electronic health record or EHR. This is a system that helps you to maintain compliant documentation around patient care and it helps you to facilitate the claims process. Without the use of an EHR payment for services would be very difficult to procure.
Additionally, there are a lot of ehrs that exist. And they are not all created equal. Since you have a variety of options to choose from here are some guidelines that can help pick which EHR you are going to work with.
Choose an EHR that is user-friendly. There are a lot of ehrs that exist that are not user-friendly and are very complicated. That is because revenue cycle management and documentation around patient care is also complicated. Therefore you will want to choose a system that is user-friendly. This will help you to save time and energy when operating in a software system.
Some things to look out for that indicate a system is user-friendly: you can easily maneuver scheduling, you can submit claims in a conspicuous way, you can post payments easily, and the system has links to other parts of the system to facilitate ease of use.
The other reason you will want to choose a user-friendly EHR is if you hire another clinician or clinicians. You will not want to spend a lot of time training them on the use of the system.
Choose a system that automated patient registration. You can likely name several situations where time was spent with the patient filling out paperwork. This is time that can spend doing valuable clinical work. These software systems have developed in a way that can automate the patient registration process through a patient portal.
Often times you can just send a patient a link and they can fill out their paperwork and informed consent online. So by the time they arrive for the first session you are all ready to go for my paperwork perspective.
Do your best to try and automate those parts of your practice that can be automated.
Choose an EHR that produces valuable data so you can run your business. Ehrs house a significant amount of data. That data can include payment records, average time to payment, patient retention rates, allowed amounts, etc.
It is important that you have access to data so that you can monitor how your business is doing. You will want to be able to explore this data in a spreadsheet format. This will help you to facilitate processing what you need in order to know how each business process is performing.
Choose an EHR that is budget-friendly. The cost for an EHR can range from $30 a month to $150 a month per provider depending on the features and what you need the system to do. So make a list of the things that you want the system to do like patient registration, payment posting, e-prescribing, etc. The more detailed the list you can make the better idea of the EHR that you need.
Once you find a system that you believe will be a good fit sign up for a demo or talk to the sales team so that you can get a better picture of the system and how it operates.
Keep in mind that no system is perfect and each one has their own nuance to how they work. you will find glitches along the way but the most important thing to bear in mind is that it covers the essentials that you need it to cover.