How an EMR Can Lead to Your Personal Freedom

How an EMR Can Lead to Your Personal Freedom

Implementing the EMR technology is essential in the 21st century for clinicians to convert to digital records, submit reimbursement claims and get paid.

EMR expert, Nitin Chhoda, was one of the first to use the software and is sharing his expertise on the many ways an EMR contributes to a practitioner’s personal freedom.

EMRTime is money and an EMR provides savings for clinicians on both fronts.

Verifying Insurance Coverage

From the moment a client makes an appointment to the moment the patient encounter is completed, an EMR is on the job, increasing efficiency and boosting productivity.

An EMR has the tools to verify insurance information prior to the client’s visit, providing practitioners with the information needed to formulate a treatment plan based on insurance limitations, coverage and eligibility.

Fewer Hours and More Money

A fully integrated EMR includes a secure patient portal where individuals can complete a health history online. That information is available prior to the client’s visit, allowing clinicians to familiarize themselves with the patient’s problems before they arrive. The data can decrease the wait times for patients and practice owners by up to 47 percent and reduces time spent gathering information in the exam room.

The information gathered with an EMR allows practice owners to see more patients during the normal work day and manage treatment options, without the need to stay late or conduct extended hours.

Clinicians have more free time and the funds to enjoy personal activities with friends and family.

Anytime Access

Patient records are updated instantly with an EMR, anytime the client’s information is retrieved. The systems provide a single resource for all aspects of a practice’s management needs. The records can be accessed from multiple locations and by numerous medical professionals to coordinate care.

If a patient requires treatment in an ER, the on-call physician has all the information needed to assess and treat the patient, without the need to contact the client’s physician.

Space and Time

Office supplies represent a major expense for practices. An EMR saves everything digitally, eliminating the need for paper documents, files, folders and all the related products needed to manage a mountain of paperwork.

EMRs require a fraction of the space needed for file cabinets to house paper records. There’s no need to search and sift through dozens of documents to locate a specific paper and the technology eliminates misplaced files.

Errors and Reimbursementselectronic medical records

With an EMR, reimbursement claims are submitted electronically, in real time. The technology contains the ability to identify errors, mistakes and potential difficulties with claims before they’re transmitted.

A complete record of each transaction is maintained, along with patient balances, and payments can be received in as little as 10 days.

Electronic medical record provides the tools for clinicians to work smarter, not harder. They save time through increased efficiency and productivity within all departments, and work to identify errors and mistakes that can virtually eliminate denials and rejections. The result is that clinicians have increased revenues and the freedom to reap the benefits of their labor.

Medical Billing And Coding Outsourced

Medical Billing And Coding Outsourced

Medical billing and coding are indeed a very complex subject.  It is important to analyze whether your practice will need an in-house medical biller and coder or have it outsourced.

Nitin Chhoda gives some factors to consider in order to guide your physical therapy practice when it comes to your medical billing needs.

medical billing and codingOutsourcing often increases efficiency, especially in technical fields like accounting and medical billing and coding.

Within a single office, a number of practices can be serviced by a handful of highly skilled professional medical billers and coders.

They can focus all of their resources and attention on efficiency and a system that works. At a medical clinic, the primary focus is often the patients, as it should be.

Reasons to Outsource Your Medical Billing and Coding

Here are some very good reasons that a practice should consider outsourcing medical billing and coding. For the most part, the decision will be financial. But to determine whether or not it will be worthwhile for your practice to outsource can be so complex that identifying key reasons to outsource will help.

You’re New

New clinicians or health care providers have a whole host of things to worry about. How do you maintain a steady stream of patients?

Does your practice have the in-house testing capabilities necessary for the needs of the community? How do you balance the business side with patient care? How many hours per day should you be seeing patients?

Probably the top concern is how your patients are doing, how they feel about you, and whether or not you’re helping them. Managing a business at the same time as you’re learning what it means to run a private practice can be overwhelming.

Staff Turnover is High

If you are handling in-house medical billing and coding, but have to hire a new biller or coder regularly, your practice will suffer.

The learning curve for medical billing and coding is unforgiving and even a skilled medical billing and coding professional is going to be slow to start as they figure out your particular system. For practices that can’t seem to keep medical billing and coding staff members, a consistent service from elsewhere will be more efficient.

Inefficiency is Obvious medical billing and coding oursourced

Outsourcing has a couple of major benefits, and one of them is that rejections and denials are usually decreased when you outsource medical billing and coding.

If you are experiencing problems with collections and your rejection and denial rate is high, it may be time to consider giving the job to a service that specializes in getting claims accepted.

You Don’t Want to Focus on Billing

Chances are, you don’t want to think about medical billing and coding. As critical as getting paid is to the health of your practice, if you became a doctor because you want to help people feel better, billing is probably an annoying part of your job.

Not to mention the fact that an incredible amount of tech savvy and skill is required to make your medical billing and coding system efficient and effective. Many clinicians decide that the billing side is the part they don’t want to know about – they’d prefer to let someone else worry about the medical billing and coding courses so they can continue to provide a service to the community.

Electronic Medical Records –  How to Implement?

Electronic Medical Records – How to Implement?

Although switching to EMR will make the documentation process better, there are some factors that need to be considered before expecting a smooth transition.

Nitin Chhoda points out that open communication with staff before, during, and after implemenation is important.  He will discuss how and why managing your staff’s expectations is crucial, and how to handle any rough patches during the change over process.

electronic medical recordsElectronic medical records are sometimes feared by clinicians and medical managers because of wrong implementation that may not actually improve the business and remain stagnant instead.

Implementation is going to be the toughest time, as everyone will probably be adjusting their workflow and accomplishing tasks more slowly than before.

But this shouldn’t discourage you from making the necessary changes. You will learn a lot through implementation of your electronic medical records and you can use that to your advantage.

Before Implementation

The best way to ensure that implementing electronic medical records goes smoothly for your practice is to plan and prepare beforehand. You should have a time leading up to implementation when all staff members can give input, voice concerns, and get the training they will need.

Remember this phrase: managing expectations.

If your staff expects the process to be difficult and frustrating, but things go smoothly, you will find that electronic medical records implementation will be easier. But if you try to convince the staff that it will be simple and straightforward, any problems will seem larger than they are in the grand scheme of things.

Make a plan, set goals, get buy-in and feedback, and give your staff the training they will need. Implementation will be a completely different experience if you prepare for the physical therapy electronic medical records implementation process.

When You Hit Tough Patches

electronic medical records implementationThere will be rough spots. Accept that now and you are halfway to dealing with them. The same is true for your staff’s attitude towards difficulties.

Let them know that you expect it to take a bit of time in implementing electronic medical records system before everyone has adjusted and that you want them to deal with problems rather than brush over them.

Problems that arise will educate you on how to improve the system to meet the needs of staff. Use each problem as if it is an opportunity. Talk to staff and the software developers so changes can be made right from the start.

Others Have Been There Before

Another important thing to remember is that you aren’t the first practice to implement physical therapy software for electronic medical records management. There are incredible resources out there that can help you along the way. From choosing the right physical therapy EMR to dealing with issues during EMR implementation, you can find resources online.

Electronic medical records system implementation could present some struggles for you and your staff. But those struggles don’t have to be disasters.

Makes sure that you and your staff have access to training materials and resources and that everyone is encouraged to ask questions. If you can manage the expectations of the staff, ensure that they are on board even before electronic medical records implementation starts, and give them support during the process, things will go more smoothly.

Electronic medical records of physical therapy software has been improving, but that doesn’t mean the prefect fit has been established. Another critical part of ensuring that implementation goes well is that you choose the right software. Take your time and do the research to determine what will work best for your practice.

Physical Therapy EMR Top Five Advantages

Physical Therapy EMR Top Five Advantages

Many physical therapy business owners are not yet convinced they should make the change over to automated documentation.

Nitin Chhoda enumerates the five advantages that physical therapy EMR can give, and how it can affect the entire process of a practices’ documentation from scheduling to billing.

physical therapy EMRPhysical therapy EMR system is obviously going electronic and is starting to look more and more like the obvious choice for physical therapy software.

Many physical therapy EMR systems handle everything from physical therapy documentation to billing to scheduling.

Just in case you’re not convinced, here are the top five advantages of physical therapy EMR for all of your PT documentation software needs.

#5: Integrated Billing

Many clinicians find this to be one of the most obvious benefits, but it cannot be stressed enough. When you implement physical therapy software that offers complete physical therapy EMR transition, your business has the opportunity to get much, much more efficient. Medical billing is a complex job, and EMR for physical therapy services can make it just a bit simpler.

Because billing, scheduling, and electronic medical records will all be tracked by the same system, you can expect things to be more intuitive.

Medical billing can involve many steps and should include aging reports and follow-ups. A good physical therapy EMR system will allow you to set reminders and collect insurance and patient payments in a more efficient manner.

#4: Professionalismphysical therapy EMR advantages

Your practice with an integrated physical therapy EMR services will give patients even more confidence about your services.

It turns out that the way patients perceive your office will make a difference – both new and continuing patients may decide your practice is not organized enough and walk out the door at any time.

If you show them a standard of paperwork, billing, and timely communications, they will respect the practice and feel more confident.

Additionally, physical therapy EMR can help busy therapists to keep all of their patients straight. No one is expected to remember every detail of every appointment. Electronic medical records make it quicker and easier to get caught up.

#3: Reporting and Profitability

A fully integrated physical therapy EMR will allow you to track the indicators that you want to check. How often do cancelled appointments remain empty? How often do referrals lead to a consistent new client? If you can get these numbers quickly and easily, you can use them to make your practice more profitable and efficient.

#2: EMRs are Coming

Physical therapy EMR and billing are the directions we’re all headed anyway. Why? Because they cut down on expenses and wasted time, which means you’ll be wasting less money on inefficient procedures. Implementing a physical therapy EMR now will ensure that you are on track to work with the rest of the medical community in the most efficient and practical way.

#1: Precision, Accessibility, Accountability

With physical therapy EMR and software that is designed by and for physical therapists, you can improve precision and accountability. When a system is intuitive to use and provides short cuts for a fast and constantly changing workflow, everyone gets better at their job. And if there is ever any question about why a decision was made or how a situation was handled, all the information will be together in one very easily accessible place.

Electronic Medical Records – What Is It?

Electronic Medical Records – What Is It?

The latest and most convenient way to process your physical therapy documentation is through the use of electronic medical records. Nitin Chhoda defines this system and how it affects the whole process within a physical therapy practice.

electronic medical recordsTechnology has allowed humans to achieve amazing things, even in the past couple of decades. Consider that less than 40 years ago email was a science fiction dream.

Sending messages instantly from anywhere to anywhere else in the world were seemed impossible then. Even electronic medical records are not developed yet.

Today we take that convenience for granted, even though email and the Internet have made it possible for improvements in efficiency that were previously unimaginable.

What is EMR?

EMR stands for electronic medical record, and electronic medical records promise to be the technology of the future for anyone with any kind of medical practice.

An electronic medical record (EMR) is the digital, or paper-free way for medical practices of all kinds to track a patient’s care, medical history, and progress.

From doctors to physical therapists to dentists, anyone who treats a patient must adhere to certain documentation practices like having electronic medical records. However, until recently the only option was to write everything down on physical forms and review the notes before each visit with a patient.

Electronic medical records allow healthcare professionals to review information more quickly and provide better care to their patients. Consider that a clinician may see anywhere between eight and fifteen patients in a single day.

Some may be new patients, others are coming back for check-ups, and others have specific diseases or conditions for which they need regular testing. Without a photographic memory, it is impossible to keep up with all the details that are important to caring for each patient.

That is why an effective and correct implementation of the electronic medical records is very important. In fact, some clinicians find that just remembering the names of all their patients is a huge challenge.

electronic medical records definitionRecalling Important Details

Medical records are critical to the process of recalling those important details, including things like which medications a patient is currently taking and what was discussed at their last visit.

Electronic medical records make reviewing this information quick and easy.

Rather than having to spend time looking for a medical file, electronic medical records make all the information carried around on a tablet or computer shared between the reception desk computer and the clinician’s computer with the click of a button. Files are pulled up instantly and are always legible.

Of course good medical recordkeeping is a continuous job. Clinicians and other healthcare professionals must update records during and after each visit. In fact, electronic medical records can even help a clinician to remember which questions they should be asking and which tests should be performed, based on what information must be entered into the electronic medical records.

EMR and Billing

Then, with automatic or manually triggered processes, a patient can be billed as soon as the appointment is over. All the appropriate filing for Medicare or health insurance company billing can also be handled by electronic medical records systems. And alerts can be arranged so that if bills go unpaid, the clinic staff can re-bill quickly and easily.

If you want to know what electronic medical records are, think about the way you would manage all patient information, billing, and recordkeeping. Imagine a system that integrates all administrative tasks with a system that allows all kinds of medical professionals to be more efficient and better informed when heading into an appointment.

Medical Coding Latest Trends

Medical Coding Latest Trends

Medical coding is a complicated task, and requires constant updating. NItin Chhoda shares the main tasks of a medical coder and the importance of using certified people.

medical coding trendsBecause medical coding is such an important task, many clinics assign a medical coder to do the job. Sometimes the medical coder and the medical biller are the same person, especially in a smaller clinic.

But medical coding is a complex task that requires a detail oriented approach and specific knowledge. Some of the most recent trends in medical coding have shown an increase in the demand for certified medical coders.

Updates to Codes

A certified medical coder for physical therapy billing is required to spend a certain amount of time studying medical coding before they become certified.

You don’t have to have a degree or certification to work as a medical coder, but you do have to understand medical terminology and have a good education in physiology and anatomy.

Reading what a clinician has written and assigning the appropriate medical codes would be hard if you don’t know what the clinician is talking about.

But another advantage of hiring a certified medical coder is that they will be required to take continuing education courses and re-certify regularly. That means that when changes are being made to medical coding websites, the medical coding staff member will be updated through courses.

One very important change that is coming soon is the switch from ICD-9 codes to ICD-10 codes, which will occur in October of 2013. An additional 100,000 codes will be introduced into the system, and the ICD-9 codes only number about 13,600 codes. This change is going to affect every single health care provider in the country.

Education and Job Outlookmedical coding latest trends

As a result of the need for skilled medical coding professionals, the job of a medical coder is looking pretty steady for the next decade and beyond.

Competitive certification programs are popping up all across the country. For people looking for a steady and well-paid job, medical coding is a good option these days.

There have been a few recent trends in medical coding education. Most significantly, more and more medical clinics want to hire certified medical coders rather than someone they will have to train themselves.

A skilled and experienced coder will be able to handle the job efficiently and they will be learning how to deal with changes and updates as part of their re-certification courses. With this kind of confidence-inducing education, certified medical coders are a well-respected part of successful medical practices.

Paperwork vs. Electronic Medical Records

Another big adjustment that is rapidly changing the way medical coding is done is the introduction of electronic medical records. For some coders, this sounds like the best idea yet. EMR systems might make their jobs faster and more efficient, allowing for coding and billing to occur side-by-side within the computer program.

Some medical coding professionals are not so enthusiastic. They see plenty of potential for problems with security and privacy. But as electronic systems evolve and the need for better electronic security arises, it seems that security companies are developing the proper privacy measures to accommodate a paper-free medical coding environment.