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1. EMR Increases Productivity
Organizations see improved productivity as a result of the many processes that become automated through the use of EMR technology. Tasks like pulling/filing paper charts become replaced by simply clicking a patient's name in the EMR system. End-of-day reporting becomes much easier as reports can be generated directly from the EMR system. Lab and imaging results can be placed directly into the patient's EMR, thereby making it easier for users to access. Integration with diagnostic devices enables users to input lab and x-ray results and findings directly into the patient EMR, eliminating the need to manage the many types of forms received in today’s offices. Though it is clear that EMR can make your office more productive; what you do with this new time doesn’t necessarily translate into financial benefit.
2. EMR Increases Revenue
EMR can increase your revenue by giving you the ability to offer new services to patients. Many EMR vendors offer features for patients to view their medical information, schedule/cancel appointments and complete forms ahead of time via the organization’s website. This can help attract new business and reduce the load on your staff. EMR software also enables offices to reduce their physical storage space by drastically reducing the amount of paper used for each patient. This can translate into having more office space available for treatment, possibly providing room for an additional associate. Improved insurance reimbursement as a result of better coding and billing procedures can also increase your revenue. Being in closer touch with a patient’s treatment plan and filing documentation at the right time can help maximize your reimbursement.
3. EMR Helps You Avoid Costs
EMR software can help you reduce the many expenses associated to paper charts, poor documentation and high malpractice premiums but also creates new expenses as a result of support contracts, computer maintenance and product updates. Reducing paper chart costs, including purchasing stationary (folders, paper), copying, management (pulling/filling) and storage (office space, cabinets) is the clearest benefit of implementing an EMR software. Transcription costs can also be reduced as EMR's can provide you with an easier means for patient documentation and report writing. When you become busier you can avoid the cost of hiring new staff by becoming more efficient with the EMR system. You can avoid expensive medications by offering patients more cost effective alternatives. You can help keep your malpractice premiums lower as a result of higher quality documentation and drug prescription alerts. A long-term implementation plan and commitment to eliminate paper charts is crucial if cost avoidance benefits are to be realized.
4. EMR Increases Profit
In order for you to increase your profits, you need to take into account all these possible benefits and compare them to the new costs that you will incur as a result of an EMR implementation. Many benefits, however, are difficult to quantify. Benefits such as improved care, patient satisfaction, and office image are items that contribute to higher profits and also result in increased patient referrals and better patient retention.
5. EMR Improves Clinical Decision Making
EMR software is packed with many tools to help doctors make betters decisions. These tools range from diagnosis to prescribing medications to treatment plan recommendations. Most EMR's have built in PDR-based medication dictionaries providing doctors with Adverse Drug Event (ADE) alerts, generic drug and dosage recommendations. EMR's also provide decision support to make treatment recommendations based off of a patient's diagnosis. Health maintenance reminders become easy to manage thanks to EMR's automatic health maintenance reminder systems.
6. EMR Enhances Documentation
Through the use of computer network technology, EMR software permits more than one user to access a patient's chart at the same time. This feature helps ensure a more complete and accurate chart as all the information can be entered in real-time. With the new HIPAA laws, many offices using paper charts are exposing themselves to unnecessary risks. Most EMR's come equipped with a security administration module enabling adminstrators to manage access to patient records through user permissions. EMR's provide physicians with access to a more complete and legible patient record. One of the greatest advantages to having patient documentation digitized is the ability to manipulate data for reporting capabilities. This becomes very useful for research reports, statistics, drug recalls and patient marketing.
7. EMR Helps Deliver Better Care to Patients
Finally, the benefit of offering better patient care through the addition of all these new features may be the greatest benefit. Many doctors are now taking advantage of the internet to conduct web consultations. Being able to access patient data from anywhere in the world via a secure internet connection allows the doctor to conduct web consultations or generate reports from home or any place else.
For more information on how EMR Experts can help your practice realize these benefits please contact us for a FREE Software Demonstration and Consultation
Last Updated: December 12, 2011