Electronic Medical Records and Their Uses

Electronic Medical Records and Their Uses

Nitin Chhoda describes the many uses of electronic medical record system, and how it can help streamline the entire documentation process. Starting with the patient’s first appointment, down to the compliance requirements for Medicare.

electronic medical records Medical records are a critical part of any medical practice. It ensure that patients are given the right medications at the right time or that a physical therapy schedule is being followed accurately.

There are very specific rules about how medical records are kept, and in that past all medical records were kept on paper.

But today more and more medical offices, from dentists to physical therapists and physicians, are using electronic medical records or EMR.

Streamline the System

Electronic medical records for physical therapy services is one way to streamline the entire system of tracking patients. Physical therapy electronic medical records is making offices more efficient by decreasing the amount of paper records being printed and the amount of storage space needed to track patient progress.

With a growing and evolving set of physical therapy documentation software options, physical therapists are able to carefully track each patient in a quick and efficient manner.

Specific Benefits of Physical Therapy EMR

One major benefit of electronic medical records for physical therapy is that it maximizes the time that physical therapists can spend focused on their patients. Physical therapy documentation software makes it quick and easy to update a patient record and can make certain documentation as quick as hitting a button or tapping a check box on a laptop or tablet.

PT documentation software is portable, as long as you have an Internet connection and a device that you can access the web from.

Another benefit that will help patients immensely when using electronic medical records is the fact that it is easy to share information between offices when using physical therapy documentation software.

As a physical therapist, this can make your job easier and more efficient. If you have a patient who is in physical therapy due to an injury and they visit their doctor, too, your office and the doctor’s office can transfer pertinent information in an instant if you both use electronic medical records.

electronic medical records usesAnd finally, electronic medical records for physical therapy services make compliance with programs like Medicare simple and fast.

You can incorporate all kinds of alerts and schedules into your electronic medical records system so that when it’s time to report outcomes, your “paperwork” is set and ready to go.

PT documentation software offers a lot of scheduling solutions, including billing and reimbursement reminders. Plus the federal Electronic Health Records deadline from the HITECH Act is fast approaching, and getting electronic medical records for physical therapy services is a great way to transition starting right now.

Ease of Use is Key

While there are a lot of reasons to physical therapy documentation software, including the fact that you’ll save money, if it’s not easy to use your physical therapy electronic medical records system, it will feel more like a headache than relief.

Every change requires a transition period, and it might feel difficult while your office is learning to use the PT documentation software. But in the long run, everyone wins. Patient information in an electronic medical record system setting is more readily accessible to all health care professionals who care for them, which makes it easier to do your best for your patients.

Electronic Medical Records: Not Just Another Documentation Software

Electronic Medical Records: Not Just Another Documentation Software

Using electronic medical records system goes beyond efficiency metrics, its about managing your practice.  Nitin Chhoda discusses the power of the scheduling feature, and how important it is to manage cancelled or missed appointments. 

electronic medical records softwareThe medical world is currently undergoing a digital revolution.

Paper records that for a long time was the only way to keep track of patients, are being replaced by digital databases and electronic medical records.

But this trend is more significant than just a change in how documentation is handled. Physical therapy software that tracks every aspect of treatment—from scheduling and prescriptions to billing—will change.

Occupational Therapy Software

Occupational therapy software marks a monumental shift in how the business of physical therapy management is done by implementing electronic medical records. With occupational therapy software for electronic medical records, you are still administering your patients’ files.  However, there will be a tonal shift in how everything is approached.

By adopting a digital-first approach, the documentation process becomes instant.  Your patients can sign in on an iPad, and their presence is instantly recorded in your database. When you see them, you know when the appointment actually begins because it is recorded instantly.  That gives you useful metrics on how efficient your practice is, and how long the wait time really is.

That’s just one benefit of having an electronic medical records. But physical therapy scheduling software for electronic medical records goes beyond efficiency metrics. The software is about managing your practice, after all.  One of the most powerful features is the ability to handle cancelled or missed appointments.

electronic medical recordsCancelled or Missed Appointments

As a physical therapist, you know the pain of having a patient cancel on you.

That slot is usually lost time, because scheduling a new appointment is usually more work than anyone has time for if you don’t use an electronic medical records yet.

Keeping track of cancellations can be incredibly difficult, and usually there is no way to manage a schedule without a single person handling every change – an almost impossible proposition.  New appointments are rarely scheduled to replace the missed one, costing you money and making your practice seem more busy than it actually is.

By adopting a fully digital practice like electronic medical records, any cancellation or missed appointment is immediately logged. 

Everyone looking at the calendar immediately sees the change.  The second someone cancels their appointment, that time slot is available again for another patient.

New Type of Documentation Software

All that said, electronic medical records management software is an incredible type of documentation software.  It makes keeping track of tests, progress, and prescriptions incredibly simple.  With a quick and easy electronic query, you get all the information you have on a patient.

And if another facility also uses electronic medical records keeping, you can get their records instantly. Which brings us to perhaps the most compelling aspect of electronic physical therapy management software: the ability to send and receive patient information without resorting to the mail or the fax machine.

High-resolution images, full documents written in legible text, and all test results can be sent or received in a matter of seconds without wasting paper or needing a receptionist to man the print desk.

Electronic medical records are more than just another piece of documentation software.  They will set your firm free from the tyranny of sloppy record keeping, make looking up patient information painless, and simply improve every aspect of running your practice.

Physical Therapy Management: Top Ten Benefits of EMR

Physical Therapy Management: Top Ten Benefits of EMR

Nitin Chhoda reveals the the top ten benefits to changing over your manual system to electronic medical records. These benefits will help increase your productivity and efficiency within your practice and allow your physical therapy business to thrive.

Top Ten Benefits of EMR

Better Record Keepingphysical therapy management
Physical therapy management and documentation software makes it incredibly simple to keep a complete record of everything that your patient has been diagnosed with.

Whether you have prescribed a rigorous physical therapy regimen to help a patient recover from a nasty fall, or whether you are simply checking on a leg, you can keep better records using occupational therapy software.

Easier to Read
Doctors aren’t known for their stellar handwriting. Rather than risk that someone (including you) can’t read your handwriting, opt for a fully digital solution. Physical therapy management of EMR makes this simple, and makes reading the patient’s information simple.

Bill Quicker
Billing is probably not your favorite part of running an occupational therapy practice. But nonetheless, it is an important part of the job. Minimize the pain by minimizing the work. Physical therapy management and billing is made easy when you use physical therapy management software.

All the necessary information is kept on hand; from what the patient’s address is, to how much they owe you, to how long it takes them to pay. EMR can even handle alerts to remind you when to bill next.

Compete Documentation
Physical therapy management documentation is critical to providing thorough care. Make sure that every thought and note about a patient’s visit is fully documented by using physical therapy documentation software that comes integrated with most complete EMR solutions. All relevant information about every patient will be properly filed and easily accessible.

Easy Patient Management
Managing patients with paper records might be easy when you only have a few, but problems will start to arise as your practice grows. Simplify your patient management system by opting for a digital physical therapy management solution.

Send Records Quickly
Electronic records are far simpler to send than paper records. With paper, you will need to send a photocopy in the mail or fax a paper copy to another facility, where it will be printed out on paper. Doing that wastes time, money, and paper. With most physical therapy management EMR systems you can send the information digitally. It is virtually free to do so, and most facilities have at least one computer in the office.


Receive Records Quickly
Speaking of transfer of medical records, you can also receive digital records instantly with EMR software. And with decent EMR physical therapy management and software, you can even add that information to your own records. EMR makes getting information quick and painless.

Don’t Lose Records 
Paper records have a bad habit of getting lost, misplaced, or damaged. Don’t let paper destroy your practice. Using physical therapy documentation software, you can keep track of every shred of information you have and store it securely online.

physical therapy management EMRScheduling Make Simple
Physical therapy management and scheduling is easy when the records are kept in the computer.

You can keep track of all your patients without worrying about the complexities of paper records.

An Integrated Practice
Physical therapy management software simply makes your physical therapy practice run more smoothly.

Look at all the benefits of running occupational therapy software! Your business will be revolutionized as everything is made more efficient with electronic medical records.

Physical Therapy Documentation: Determining the Best For Your Practice

Physical Therapy Documentation: Determining the Best For Your Practice

Whether web-based or server-based, your physical therapy documentation system should be helping your practice increase productivity.

Nitin Chhoda differentiates these two types of physical therapy EMR documentation, and explains that choosing the right system should not be based on the price alone.

physical therapy documentation practicePhysical therapy documentation is sensitive and complex, requiring a lot of specific knowledge for each staff member involved in using medical records, billing payers, or reviewing reports.

Common Sense Is the Key

In the same way, each practice has to manage their physical therapy documentation in the way that makes the most sense for the staff.

If a practice consists of just a handful of people, you may be able to make a decision based on what everyone is comfortable with.

There are, of course, also the financial considerations. Can your physical therapy documentation practice afford the one-time expenses of purchasing a server, or would you be better served by paying monthly for a web-based EMR solution?

There are many questions you should ask yourself as you look into different solutions, and the specific answers for your practice will not be the same as they are for any other practice.

Dollars and Cents 

The first consideration for almost every practice manager when it comes to physical therapy documentation  is the cost. But the costs of each solution are not as simple as they may seem at first. On the one hand, an in-house server will cost a lot up front.

But many of the truly worthwhile web-based EMR solutions are not cheap, either, and you may end up spending the same amount of money, but over a different period of time.

For a small physical therapy documentation practice, spending money slowly is often better than spending it all at once. For a larger practice, the cost of installing an in-house server may be offset by the gains in productivity that tens or hundreds of staff members achieve with a server-based physical therapy documentation solution.

It turns out that the price difference will not be as significant as you might be lead to believe. So check your prices carefully before assuming that the “cheaper” option is the best just because it costs less right now. There may be set-up costs related to a web-based physical therapy documentation EMR, but its only because it requires that everyone has a computer and that the office has a high speed Internet connection that never goes down.

Speed and Conveniencephysical therapy documentation determination

This is another area where the decision may not be as simple as it seems. Server-based EMRs will always be a tiny bit faster, saving everyone a few seconds here and there.

That time can add up and make a difference; the last thing you want is for clinicians to be waiting for the program to load. But for a smaller physical therapy documentation practice, the time is not as significant and the benefits are not as clear-cut.

The convenience of a web-based solution is often a major selling point. With login information, anyone who needs to access the system can do so, no matter where they are, as long as they have an Internet connection.

As with every stage of the decision-making process, the best solution for your practice’s physical therapy documentation needs will be specific to your practice. There are a lot of things to weigh in making this decision, but remember that what you choose should be useful, convenient, and intuitive for the staff.

Electronic Medical Records System Top Five Tips

Electronic Medical Records System Top Five Tips

It’s not enough that your practice is switching to an electronic medical record system. The most important thing to remember when choosing a physical therapy software is that it will be able to meet your needs.

Price is not the only factor. Nitin Chhoda reviews the top five tips to choosing the right electronic medical records system for your practice.

electronic medical recordsChoosing an electronic medical records system for a physical therapy practice can be quite difficult.

There are hundreds of electronic medical records vendors, all vying for your attention.  Often there is no clear advantage of one solution over another.

But the evaluation and comparison process is worth the time.  Here are five tips to help you navigate the physical therapy electronic medical records (EMR) scene.

Choose Based on Price.  For many firms, price is an important consideration.  But sometimes the low price means bad design or fewer features. If an electronic medical record is able to successfully compete on price, then that product might just be good enough for your firm, but make sure you’re getting the features you need.

Focus on Design.  Remember: you and your team are going to have to use this electronic medical records software every day.  It should be intuitive and practical.That means no excessive clicks to get through note taking or record updates and an easy to understand interface.

The interface matters for physical therapy electronic medical records solutions, because if the program isn’t easy and fun to use, it will feel like more of a burden than a solution. A surprising number of electronic medical records vendors don’t focus on design and usability.

If nobody wants to use the electronic medical records (EMRs) software, it’s not worth buying. Oh, and watch out for the phrase “it’s only a click away!”  Every click counts.  Ideally it should already be on the page you are on.

Analytics are Important.  You will be using your physical therapy documentation software to keep track of your patients.  That also means that you need to be able to use it to get information back out.

Ideally you should be able to ask your physical therapy electronic medical records solution about your patient.  What was prescribed, how many of a given type of injury have you dealt with, how a patient is progressing.  Physical therapy documentation software is only as good as its ability to tell you that information.

Don’t Beta Test.  You need software designed for electronic medical records of physical therapy.  Don’t opt for a product that has seen enormous success in another medical field but hasn’t been tried in a physical therapy setting.

electronic medical records system

Every field is a little different, and physical therapists’ electronic medical records have different needs than more general doctors.Don’t let a salesmen talk you into PT documentation software that won’t do what you need just because either he or the software is slick.

Be Suspicious of Salesmen.  This is probably the best advice that can be offered.  The goal of a salesman is to sell you a product.  As such, they will gloss over any flaws that their software has.

This isn’t a good thing, especially if they manage to convince you to adopt a product with a user interface your team can’t use.

But we have all dealt with salesmen before.  As long as we guard ourselves against slick sales pitches and keep our eyes on the goal of finding the right electronic medical records for physical therapy, there shouldn’t be any problem.  Just remember to try the electronic medical records software and have as many members of your team test it out before you decide to invest.

Physical Therapy Documentation System Benefits

Physical Therapy Documentation System Benefits

Changing your physical therapy documentation to an automated setting is now possible. Nitin Chhoda discusses the advantages of using an electronic medical records (EMR) system that will automate your documentation process.

He specifies the benefits of using a web-based setting, and provides examples of how an automated system can provide your practice with instant access to patient records.

physical therapy documentationPhysical therapy documentation has different systems. Maintaining paper records system has become something of a legacy in most industries.

Electronic databases have taken over the world, hosting large quantities of data that previously would have been unthinkable.

But despite this worldwide shift, the medical profession continues to operate mostly on paper.

Only 10% of US medical practices have a fully-integrated physical therapy documentation solution, while a slightly larger but still unreasonably small 20% have some form of electronic medical records.

That is terrible. Especially considering that web-based physical therapy documentation systems are now so powerful. There are physical therapy documentation tips provided in other part of this website.

As of the moment, here are some of the advantages that a web-based solution have over other options for physical therapy documentation.

ADVANTAGES A WEB-BASED SOLUTION

“Web-Based” Means “Available Everywhere”.

By basing your physical therapy EMR system on a web-based tool, you are ensuring that you can reach the files no matter where you are. Websites are reachable from anywhere that there is an internet connection, and this means that you could access and read over your records at home, when making house calls, or when someone needs an over-the-phone consultation.

Physical therapy documentation for physical therapy services that are based on the web make sure that your files are reachable when you want them, no matter where you want them. And that is something you just can’t do with paper records.

Send with Ease.

Just like you can access the files from anywhere, you can give other physical therapists access to your records with little difficulty.

physical therapy documentation system

This is where web-based solutions truly begin to beat even other physical therapy documentation systems that are based on local servers.

When your data is stuck on a server at your office, you aren’t going to be able to share them as easily as you can with a web-based server.

Access from Any Device.

Want to use your records on an iPad? No problem! A web-based solution is easily accessible on an iPad. Other local types of physical therapy documentation software usually aren’t.

Being accessible from an iPad from anywhere means that you can take a small, lightweight tablet with you wherever you go, documenting the case as you work. It makes managing each patient record incredibly simple.

And of course, if you decide that your office wants to use Mac instead of Windows computers, well, that’s no problem.

Unlike solutions that use dedicated clients to access the information, a web-based physical therapy documentation solution is capable of being viewed on any device with an internet connection and a browser.

A Single Web Server Means Less Maintenance.

Here’s something you probably didn’t think about: managing software upgrades with traditional physical therapy documentation software means upgrading every computer that runs the software and troubleshooting problems that occur on each. But with a web-first approach, a cloud-based EMR tool only has to be updated once.

All changes will instantly be pushed out to all computers that access the tool. Going web-based for your physical therapy documentation solution just makes sense. It simplifies the difficulty of server management even as it makes your data simpler to access.