This content is not offered as, and should not be relied on as, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice in specific situations and to ensure the content is up to date.
PRACTICE MANAGEMENT AND BILLING SOLUTIONS
A secure practice management system with an integrated billing system is crucial for any practice’s prosperity. While there may be countless practice management programs, each one claims to be the most essential to your practice. However, every company imply cannot be proven suitable to handle the customized demands of each physician. Every company or programs provide various solutions that your business may require.
CONSIDERING PRACTICE MANAGEMENT, BILLING SOFTWARE, & ELECTRONIC MEDICAL RECORDS?
Electronic Medical Records (EMR)
In order to understand electronic medical records, it is vital to also comprehend the following key areas:
Length of time and reputation in the dermatology market
The distinction between a PMS, EMR and an integrated PMS/EMR Solution
Specific features of each vendor’s product (i.e., web server supported software vs. client server supported software)
Multiple site and multiple provider scheduling
E-Eligibility Insurance Verification
E-Prescribe(available without EMR if needed)
Pricing Model: Per Provider, Per User, Per Computer, Per Claim, Per Database
HL7 Compatibility-makes transitioning more seamless
Electronic Remittance Posting ERA Auto Posting
Clearing House Fees, Features, and Compatibility
Support and training costs
Annual support and maintenance fees
Upgrades, included or extra
Coding Compatibility and Free Upgrade
Hosted on your server or ASP internet hosting-the best selection here will be dependent upon your current set up
Database Backup plan
Hosting Facility if applicable
Denial dashboard and AR tools
Computer and server requirements
Integration with future EMRs or EMR availability
Scheduling and demographic ease of entry
Claim scrubbing and validation tools
Reporting Features and accessibility
Learning curve anticipated
Software (per provider)
Maintenance and upgrades
Training, support and call response time
Review of consumer guides
Patient portal-Allows patients to update their information prior to coming in
Online bill pay for patients
Integration with accounting programs and inventory management systems.
TOP TIPS WHEN SEEKING POTENTIAL VENDOR CANDIDATES
*Make Sure the EMR is CCHIT Certified.
Why? Because the $850 billion stimulus package that was passed by Congress includes $51 billion allocated to the health care industry, $19 billion of which will be used to incentivize medical practices to adopt and implement electronic health records (EHR/EMRs). These incentive payments to referring physicians will be paid out over five years in the form of increased Medicare and Medicaid premiums, starting in 2011.
To collect on these payments, a physician must be deemed a “meaningful user” of an EMR. To qualify as a meaningful user, eligible providers must demonstrate use of a “qualified or certified EMR” in a meaningful manner. Many expect CCHIT (Certification Commission for Healthcare Information Technology) to play a major role in setting this certification standard.
*Create a strategy or mock demo of product for physicians and key staff.
Why? To illustrate their understanding of the product and their level of dedication to you. A practice should request as many demonstrations as necessary to afford your team the ability to make an informed decision.
*Supporting the practice after installation and initial training with vendor.
Why? Physicians invest not only revenue in their EMR systems, but along with their staff, many hours of educational time to understand and properly execute processes with the new system.
The EMR company must clearly identify:
Issue response time
Upgrade notification, purpose & education
Training for new hires, upgrades & new features
Illustrations/references of the above responses
What expenses should I expect year two and beyond?
How long has the company been in business?
Any known corporate changes expected or in process?