Implementing EMR or Electronic Medical Record System in clinical practice is an intricate task frequently met with resistance. Shifting from a paper-reliant environment to a fully electronic system can be a seriously daunting mission. Though Implementing an EMR requires a thorough understanding of your current and future needs, the task doesn’t end there. It is even more important to know how to keep your EMR system healthy and in good shape once it has been implemented.
And that is the real challenge.
Why Does the Health of Your EMR Matter?
Over the years, patient data – charts, lab test results, prescriptions, refills, health history forms, etc – continually increases. Initially, the EMR system takes the load without complaint. However, if you just keep dumping everything in the system, it eventually becomes overloaded. You will notice the consequences:
- The system starts to slow down.
- It becomes harder to find relevant information.
- Staff struggle to find records that exist in multiple places.
To avoid this mess, upgrade your EMR system every year to maintain the amount of data flowing in.
Two Simple Steps To Get Your EMR In Shape
An EMR can be a wonderful tool, as long as it's well-maintained. Fortunately, doing so is not a complicated process.
1. Keep The Data Relevant
Keeping only the relevant patient data, and make sure it is up-to-date. Every time you see a patient, take a look at his or her record in the EMR system and spend a couple minutes clearing out unnecessary data. Soon, you will have up-to-date records for every patient.
2. Eliminate Data Duplication
Reducing data duplication can be easily achieved and will bring more efficiency to your EMR system. For example, most labs like Quest will send in reports to the physicians both as a scanned fax and in electronic form. More often than not, both formats get stored in the EMR system. Instead, keep just the electronic version of the lab test report. Avoiding the duplication will result in less load on the system over time. Furthermore, if you have a standard set for such submissions, and your staff knows which version needs to be maintained, everyone will know what to look for and where, avoiding wasted time.
Sometimes more data is dangerous, because the important information can get buried under the unimportant. Not to mention the amount of time your medical office staff has to spend to dig through all those records to get to the right information. Where time is of the essence, all this extra data could be a real threat.
Practice Forces provides medical billing outsourcing services for clients around the country and has been partnering with physicians & practices to provide revenue cycle management, across all medical specialties. Call us today for a FREE consultation at 866-634-6327 or, simply email us at [email protected].