1. Define Your Goals
Take the time to map out the features that are most important to you. Sit down with your staff and determine the must-haves for your daily operations. It is critical to define exactly what you want your technology to achieve. Are you looking for faster workflow? Autonomy from front desk tasks? Better quality notes? List out these requirements along with a price range you’re comfortable with.
2. Research Track Record
Reputation is vital. Know what type of company you want to work with and don’t settle for less. Ask your colleagues what they use and what they suggest. Make sure you are not just buying software, but securing a strong and longstanding relationship. Serious vendors should be able to offer you references from fellow providers who are using the software.
3. Talk Training
To get the most out of your E H R, you need proper training. When evaluating your prospective E H R partner, ensure you understand the key components of their training package:
- How many hours of training are included?
- Is training live or online?
- What documentation and training tools are available?
- Are there are community forums?
- What is the billing rate for additional training, if needed?
- How does this training package compare to competitors?
4. Demo before Deciding
Go into your demo with a list of questions you want to ask the representative. Having it handing can help you use the demo time effectively. Come prepared with some common scenarios and ask each vendor to walk you through those within the system. Be sure to include key team members from your office and don’t hesitate to ask for a second demonstration. Aim to demo at least a handful of vendors so you have an understanding of the breadth of the market. This will equip you to make the right choice about a software that suits your practice.
5. Review the Comprehensive Capabilities
The right E H R system should automate and streamline a majority of processes within your practice, and shouldn’t stop there. Along with training and support, your vendor should offer additional services and business support. Consider if you need an integrated credit card merchant? What about revenue cycle management? How about automated appointment reminders? Data backup?
Your provider should be a partner in your practice.
6. Understand the True Costs
Lastly, an E H R that is cheap at the outset may cost you over and over again in a lack of support, capabilities, and feature development. As code changes roll out and new government mandates hit the streets, vendors must apply developments towards keeping you compliant. Make sure you measure the value of each system carefully. Select the one that will sail along with you and your practice, without putting you under water down the line.
Selecting an E H R system can be one of the most defining decisions you will make for your practice. The rewards should far outweigh the initial task of implementations. Choose a system that will act as a supportive buoy for your practice well into the foreseeable future.
Are you interested in learning about other ways to grow your practice and ramp up your practice efficiency? Check out this webinar recording with Dr. Unruh where he discusses things to avoid in order to see more patients, increase patient retention and create the affluence you desire.