Electronic Medical Records (EMR) Software have been in the healthcare IT game for quite some time now and a lot of medical practices have completely adapted them. While on one hand, they have helped thousands of healthcare clinics operate optimally and progress a lot, they have also caused problems for others. In fact, around 40% of the physicians still see more EMR challenges than benefits and avoid using them in their daily routines.
To help physicians overcome the general issues they face with Electronic Health Records (EHR) Software, we have put together a list of dos and donts regarding EMR/EHR and Practice Management (PM) Software.
Larger EMR Software vendors such as athenahealth or Epic provide comprehensive EMR packages that contain a compilation of all the smaller tools. But this is not the case with all vendors. Once you purchase a specialty-specific software, you will realize that it either requires some kind of extra charges for availing the whole suite or does not provide other integrated functions and you need to invest in other smaller tools additionally.
You need to be aware of all such implications before the purchase. Getting in touch with the vendor directly or asking all such questions in a live demo beforehand can be particularly helpful.
The EMR Software you use must be HIPAA compliant and provide complete security to the medical records stored inside. In case of a breach, you may not only be liable to the victims of the breach but also have to pay millions of dollars in HIPAA violation penalties.
Another major issue with EMR Systems is the training of relevant staff and physicians who are going to be associated with the software directly. Staff training can be a long and continuous process and might demand a lot in terms of resources, however, compromising on the training can go negatively for you and mess up your workflow routines.
Interoperability refers to the architecture or standards that make it possible for different EHR systems to exchange information between providers. You might have a problem achieving interoperability at first but you can’t avoid this for long. Get in touch with your software provider to get proper guidance on the interoperability part.
Slow Patient Adoption
Now that you yourself as a physician and your staff has adopted the EHR Solution well and have started working with it comfortably, the next step is to make the patients comfortable with it. Some tools such as the Patient Portal are designed specifically for the patients and require direct interaction with them. If your patients are slow with technology adoption, you might face some trouble but once you’re over it, won’t hurt you a lot.