Technology-enabled tools can be useful for an independent physician who wants to run a more efficient office, communicate with patients and other physicians electronically, and maintain accurate, real-time patient medical records. Technology-enabled tools can also be a significant investment, especially for a smaller practice.
Medical Economics interviewed physicians, healthcare technology experts, and financial consultants across the United States to learn more about their experiences and to seek their advice for the independent physician considering making that tech investment. A few of their responses include:
- Form a team to evaluate needs. Involve staff in determining the type of tech investment that would benefit the practice most. The team will also be responsible for educating patients on the new technology and for establishing user protocol for the staff.
- Be sure the investment will pay off within a reasonable amount of time. The best way to determine this is to write a business plan for the independent practice. Understanding the financial picture short and long-term will enable the physician to determine if the technology is a wise investment for the practice.
- Look for available training and support for software implementation. At Elation Health, we realize that the staff at an independent practice has limited time. That’s why we designed our clinical first, cloud-based EHR to take less than an hour to learn. We’ll even migrate your previous patient data across for free. With Elation’s extraordinary 24/7 support, you’ll get help from our team of dedicated user success specialists within 30 minutes or less – 365 days a year.
- Assess practice management software to ensure it offers the capabilities needed by the independent practice. At the very least it should be able to handle appointments and billing in a secure manner.
- Identify the most useful tools for the needs of the practice, including the needs of the independent physician, the practice staff, and the patients. Ken Ferry, CEO of iCad, notes that “By implementing highly effective, state-of-the-art technologies that reduce cost to the healthcare system and simultaneously provide improved patient outcomes, physicians are on the right track to achieving unprecedented success in this new era of value-based care.”