As numerous medical practices shift gears towards a paperless environment, it is quite clear that you are also looking towards the implementation of the EHR system. After all, these electronic systems have proven their success in many practices.
They are known to make documentation quick and improve patient outcomes.
When it comes to selecting one EHR system, some of them don’t fit the practice’s workflow, while some don’t work with the products, you are evaluating. These systems do not impact a single operation but affect every facet of the practice.
Here are some aspects that you should carefully examine before choosing an EHR system.
Consider if the EHR system meets your requirements or not
Every practice is different, and it is likely that they will have different EHR requirements. Select a system that works for all your current needs and suffices your future ones as well.
When choosing the one, make sure-
- It has an easy to use interface.
- The software should integrate with all your processes and systems such as public health registries, practice management software, coding and billing systems.
- The software should support ICD-10.
- It is HIPAA compliant.
- The new features are released regularly.
Consider what type of EHR system you want
The variations of the EHR system include a physician hosted system and a remotely hosted system.
Under the physician’s hosted system, the data is stored on your servers. In this case, you have to purchase hardware, software, servers, and also handle all the security and backup measures. The data is under your control, but vendors might have a disabling code in their software.
On the other hand, the remotely hosted system has data stored on other servers. The third-party is responsible for the entire setup, its backup, maintenance and security.
You can choose any one of them that meets your practice’s needs.
Check the Transition Process
Web-based EHRs make the best choice and save you from the hassle of buying and new software. But any electronic health record system you choose must have an easy transition process and should make training your staff easy and quick.
Be aware of the time frame that it requires to get in sync with the progress. Get a clear overview of usability and then make your choice.
Look for Cloud-Based Hosting
Almost all the EHR vendors offer a cloud-hosted option, which means you don’t have to maintain hardware or servers on the practice’s location. They are considered as a relatively easy and cheap way to outsource maintenance and technical support costs.
EHR system should be ICD-9 and ICD-10 Ready
The recent changes in ICD-9 diagnostic codes are much more comprehensive than ICD-10 codes. If your system sends invalid ICD-10 codes, it could result in claim rejections.
ICD-10 has also established a long enough standard to ensure that the vendor has plenty of time to check, everything has necessary updates and is working properly.
Make sure you do not rush into EHR implementation as the entire transformation requires time, research and planning. According to AHIMA, it takes an average of 12-18 months for a sole practitioner to adopt a new health system.
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