Whether you’re transitioning from paper-based records, a hybrid system, or an existing electronic health records (EHR) system, you need to give careful consideration as to how to optimize it. With lots of moving parts, this can be a difficult task. But prioritizing this effort before you search for an EHR vendor and implement a new system is key to your future success.
Consider the following steps your organization can take to optimize your EHR system:
Carry It Out Collaboratively
EHR optimization, by its very nature, must be a collaborative effort. Any individual or group with a vested interest in the EHR system should be involved in the process. This includes personnel from your billing department, program management, and practice administration, as well as clinical staff. Don’t forget to include your EHR vendor in this list as well. These key stakeholders can help you work through the process and provide useful insight and best practices.
Reimagine Operations with Technology In Mind
If you’ve been accustomed to pulling and filing paper charts, how would you accomplish that differently with electronic files? Think about how your patient-centric activities can be streamlined in order to provide more effective patient care. This is where you start establishing your workflows. As a matter of fact, most EHR systems can be optimized to follow your organization’s current processes.
Dive Deeper with Documentation
Go beyond the fundamentals. Find out what works and doesn’t work for your organization. What information do you need for each of your patients? Can you templatize certain documentation to further streamline your processes? Take into account how your current documentation processes can be enhanced and integrate those changes into how your EHR operates.
Reevaluate Your EHR Workflow
Just because you’ve always done something a certain way doesn’t mean you should continue doing so. Oftentimes, individuals moving from paper-based records try to reproduce their customary workflow in their EHR. But if you want to get the most value out of an electronic system, you should contemplate how your organization can capitalize on an EHR’s range of capabilities. Consider how your clinic can function more efficiently now that information is readily available to any authorized staff member.
Don’t Lose Sight of Your Bottom Line
Cash flow and revenue cycle management can be a real concern for your business. Establish goals or benchmarks for your critical financial performance metrics, and use your integrated EHR system to periodically monitor the most crucial reports. Furthermore, you can share results with the entire team regarding daily collections, outstanding insurance claims, and your Insurance Aging Report. When billing systems, practice management, and electronic health records are combined, you will see an immediate impact on your revenue. You’ll start to see increased cash collections, a decrease in aging, and better reporting for earning government funding.
Personalization, Configuration, and Customization
Give thought to how your EHR solution can be tailored to your specific organization. How can the EHR be personalized so that a user only sees the information that’s relevant to their role? How can it be configured with your existing programs, templates, and forms? And, whenever necessary, how can your EHR be customized to fulfill your unique needs?
After you’ve carefully considered how to optimize your new EHR on your journey to implementation, be sure to select a vendor that will partner with you every step of the way. An EHR vendor that will help you implement best practices for clinical workflows to meet the needs of your specific care setting is worth its weight in gold. Optimizing your EHR will help enhance the quality of care your patients receive while also improving the productivity of your team. Either way, you can’t lose!
EncounterWorks’ EHR offers a number of advantages over traditional systems because of our unique, easy-to-use design and our advanced technology. Our technology enables us to provide more features, security, and interoperability at a much lower overall cost, so you can focus on running your practice rather than dealing with technology pains. We let you focus on patient care. We are also already certified as a “Complete EHR” to meet the ONC Meaningful Use requirements, so you can start meeting Meaningful Use immediately. For more information about how we can help your practice, call us today at 877.884.3367!