Physical Therapy Software: Adoption of an Integrated Tablet-Based EMR in Your Practice

Physical Therapy Software: Adoption of an Integrated Tablet-Based EMR in Your Practice

It’s not enough for an EMR to be web-based, it needs to be tablet-based. Although the two terms seem synonymous, Nitin Chhoda explains the important difference between the two, and what it means to your practice.

physical therapy billing softwareAdopting an EMR is beneficial for patients and physical therapists, but simply collecting information without being able to share among medical professionals defeats the spirit and purpose of physical therapy software automation.

The American Physical Therapy Association has set forth a vision that allows therapists to treat clients across multiple health care settings and a tablet-based EMR will help make that goal a reality.

What is a Web-Based EMR?

A web-based physical therapy software EMR enables therapists to document patient visits, add notes and create billing, all in the moment. There’s no need to go back later to enter data or decipher hastily scribbled notations.

Records are secure, yet available to multiple providers at the same time to better coordinate treatment. EMRs can scan, digitize and sort information much faster than staff. Documents, photos, test results and x-rays are easily added to become part of the patient’s permanent health record.

Why Web-Based EMR?

Web-based physical therapy software EMRs allow for real time communication between medical professionals when consultations are required, using traditional email, video, podcasts and Skype. Patient information can be retrieved from any location equipped with an Internet connection, an important feature for the future of physical therapy. It’s an essential function for therapists that provide treatment outside the clinical setting.

A web-based EMR increases access to physical therapy services in venues ranging from home visits and senior centers to spas and corporate wellness programs.

Physical therapy software and practices are evolving in how they deliver services and EMRs will play a key role.

Integrating Web-Based EMR to a Tablet Device

Physical therapy software automation can be deployed from a variety of tablet devices, offering a lightweight and portable solution. Touchscreen interfaces allow therapists to enter data efficiently to reduce errors and reimbursement denials.

Custom forms can be developed to fit the needs of individual clinics. There’s no need for practice owners to install, maintain or host software systems on-site with a web-based system. Authorized users simply log in and access the required data.

Tablet-Based EMR Is Flexible

physical therapy software documentationThe flexibility of tablet-based EMR systems allows therapists to integrate them easily with existing physical therapy software for additional value. They facilitate communications between patients and therapists.

In the office, tablet-based systems enable therapists to utilize photos and videos to help educate patients about their conditions and treatments.

Therapists can access any number of websites for information helpful for patients and make copies of pertinent information for clients to take with them.

Physical Therapy Software: EMR Adoption, Selection and Implementation Checklist

Physical Therapy Software: EMR Adoption, Selection and Implementation Checklist

Nitin Chhoda reveals the key factors to consider before adopting and implementing an EMR system in your practice with a simple, easy to follow blueprint.

physical therapy software reviewsAdoption of a physical therapy software like EMR shouldn’t be done in haste or therapists may find themselves repenting at leisure and regretting their choice of an EMR.

There are literally hundreds of physical therapy software EMR systems, most of which are designed with hospitals and physicians as the primary users.

Make Your Physical Therapy Software Unique

Physical therapy practices have unique needs and it’s imperative that therapists implement an EMR specifically developed for a physical therapy practice.

Before selecting any physical therapy software for EMR, therapists must first define their individual needs, decide what they want a physical therapy software system to accomplish, and determine how their requirements may change in the future.

Therapists should utilize due diligence and thoroughly research the EMR systems they believe best for their practice.

Checklist for EMR Selection

The following is a checklist of features clinic owners should look for in an EMR for maximum efficiency, enhanced patient care and increased practice profitability.

  • Created specifically for physical therapy practices;
  • Intuitive and user-friendly interface for therapists and staff;
  • Patient portal to schedule appointments, complete forms and request information;
  • Ability to create and scan in documents, post test results and submit prescriptions;
  • Electronic billing;
  • Web-based physical therapy software service for access from any location with an Internet connection;
  • Accommodates special privacy protections by patients;

  • Create printed copies of records when valid requests are received;
  • Communicate and share records with other medical professionals when needed;
  • Offers password protected access and encryption of data;
  • Ability to include notations and create custom forms;
  • Integrates with existing office systems;
  • Comprehensive physical therapy software back-up options;
  • Meets Meaningful Use objectives;
  • 24/7 vendor support, updates, bug fixes, staff training, and recovery tools

physical therapy scheduling softwareHow An EMR System Can Affect Your Practice

An EMR changes the way staff conduct daily tasks and they’ll need sufficient time to become familiar with the new system, implement modules gradually, but establish a timetable for integration.

It’s helpful to assemble a team to answer questions and offer assistance when problems arise.

Transitioning to any new physical therapy software system will cause some disruptions and delays. Practice owners will need to exercise patience throughout the process and remember that implementing features gradually allows staff to retain more of what they’re learning.

Schedule Staff Training Wisely

It may seem counterproductive, but many practices can benefit from light scheduling during the initial training phase and closing the practice on the day of installation. Begin having staff use the new physical therapy software system as soon as possible and avoid long periods between training sessions.

The adoption, selection and implementation of an EMR can be accomplished smoothly and efficiently with sufficient preparation.

Everyone learns at a different pace and retains knowledge at varying levels. A physical therapy software like EMR provides greater flexibility within all facets of the practice and clinic owners will soon see an increase in productivity.

Physical Therapy Software: Transforming Staff Productivity Through “Time Stamping”

Physical Therapy Software: Transforming Staff Productivity Through “Time Stamping”

Nitin Chhoda reveals how to transform productivity in your practice with the ‘date and time stamping strategy’ to minimize ‘wasted time’ and boost staff effectiveness in your practice.

physical therapy software programsPhysical therapy software staff members are industrious individuals, but in some practices, loafing, loitering, and wasting time are at epidemic proportions.

Staff members that are wasting time, unintentionally or on purpose, are essentially stealing and costing thousands or even millions in revenues.

Physical therapy software addresses the problem, providing indisputable evidence of malingering while placing more money in the clinic’s coffers.

Forms of Stealing Time

Time theft can take many forms. Some physical therapy software staff may not be performing to their full potential through inefficient methods. Other time wasters may not be so easy to spot.

Unauthorized or excessive absences, surfing the Internet, break time overages, playing computer games, checking email, watching movies and text messaging are just some of the ways staff steal time from employers.

EMRs dispense with the need for practice owners to snoop in their own clinics, examine computer records and conduct weekend raids to ferret out time thieves.

EMRs provide clinic owners with an easy way to track staff productivity through the use of time stamping.

What Date and Time Stamping Can Do to Your Practice

The physical therapy software EMR marks the creation of a wide array of entries with a date and time stamp, showing who did the work and when. Date and time stamps can reflect each step of a patient’s visit, from when vital signs were entered and test result were received to how long the visit lasted.

Some EMRs place an actual handwritten copy of the signature for each therapist and staff member for additional verification. While it’s an optional feature in some EMRs, it’s an effective tool for documenting time theft that should be considered when selecting physical therapy software. It also helps protect therapists and staff against reimbursement issues, paybacks and lawsuits.

Date and time stamping provides immediately available physical therapy software documentation of staff members who may need to be guided to new and more efficient ways of accomplishing their tasks. It’s an effective tool for discovering staff that are not performing to the clinic owner’s specifications.

Increasing Productivity Is Possible

Practice owners may find that they can terminate an individual’s employment and actually achieve gains in productivity, while others may discover they can operate more efficiently with fewer staff members.

There’s a growing trend among employees in a variety of industries – they want jobs but they don’t necessarily want to work. They utilize services, supplies and equipment for personal use that their employer supplies as a necessary part of their job.

It’s all a type of theft that physical therapy software clinic owners must guard against diligently and an EMR that provides time stamping can be worth its weight in gold.

Identifying Time Theftweb based physical therapy software

Physical therapy software is one of the easiest and most efficient means of determining when, where and how time from the practice is being stolen and the identity of the perpetrator(s).

Time theft on the job is one of the most pressing challenges for practice owners and one that costs clinics in productivity and revenue.

Once practice owners have transformed the face of physical therapy software staff productivity to the best possible efficiency, therapists can begin working on identifying the best payers to increase the financial viability of their clinics.

Physical Therapy Documentation: Distinctions Between Web-Based Versus Server-Based EMR Systems

Physical Therapy Documentation: Distinctions Between Web-Based Versus Server-Based EMR Systems

Web-based and server-based EMR systems are the two options in physical therapy documentation software. Nitin Chhoda discussess the advantages and disadvantages of both options and helps you decide which type of EMR is best for you.

physical therapy documentation professionalsThere’s been a lot of confusion and indecision among physical therapists about which type of EMR to implement.

Therapists can choose from a web-based or server-based EMR. Both can be pricy, but practice owners should be aware that there are free EMR physical therapy documentation software programs available.

They’re customizable, created by and for physical therapists, and feature an array of the most highly sought functionalities by clinic owners.

Whether web-based or server-based, physical therapy documentation software purchased from a vendor can be extremely expensive and require exorbitant monthly fees to pay for the vendor’s sophisticated and extensive data center.

Server-Based Versus Web-Based

A server-based system is housed on-site at the clinic. It doesn’t rely upon an Internet connection to access data, but remote access can be limited, necessitating establishment of an expensive WAN network.

A web-based physical therapy documentation system is hosted by a vendor and information can be accessed anywhere in the world where an Internet connection is available.

With a server-based system, therapists have more control of the overall data within the physical therapy documentation system. But with that control comes all the responsibility and cost of updating servers, backing up data, ensuring the security of patient information and remaining in compliance.

The cost of maintaining databases, workstation and networking within the office is also at the discretion of the clinic owner.

A web-based EMR dramatically reduces the cost of set up, maintenance, upgrades and IT support. Physical therapy documentation training is provided and a higher level of security can be achieved.

physical therapy documentation templatesA high-speed Internet connection will be required for both options, but with a server-based EMR, connectivity is confined to the speed of hospitals, labs and other professionals with which the practice is communicating.

Connectivity Interval

Either physical therapy documentation system can be affected by lag and latency during peak “rush hours” online when students arrive home to visit on Facebook and view YouTube videos.

Customization of forms and documents is an essential feature of any EMR and a server-based system can allow for extensive changes and customization of processes to meet the individual needs of a practice.

Many web-based EMRs type of physical therapy documentation aren’t conducive to changes or customization. They can intrude upon and affect the way therapists operate their clinics, making it imperative to implement an EMR specifically designed for physical therapy practices.

Weighing Your Practice Needs Are Very Important

Both server-based and web-based physical therapy documentation systems encompass a variety of features beneficial to a practice. Clinic owners must weigh the advantages of maintaining control over their EMR with shouldering the entire burden of cost and security.

Those who opt for a web-based EMR enjoy training, enhanced security and anywhere access, but speed can be limited during peak usage hours and by the abilities of connected EMRs. Confusion over the type of EMR to deploy has led many clinic owners to hesitate and delay implementing physical therapy documentation software.

EMRs provide the means to increase the efficiency and profitability of any practice with electronic bill submissions and marketing analytics.

Both types of EMRs also support patient portals that assist clients in scheduling appointments, requesting refills, viewing test results, and completing forms, encouraging clients to take a more active role in their healthcare.

Medical EMR: How It can Simplify Healthcare

Medical EMR: How It can Simplify Healthcare

Let’s face it. Healthcare is complicated. Nitin Chhoda explains how a good EMR system can simplify healthcare with simple and efficient data entry, better patient communication between provider and patient, and improved interaction between providers.

In this article, learn how to make scheduling, documentation, billing and even marketing simple and systematized in your practice.

medical EMRSpiraling costs for clinics and tougher reimbursement standards are two of the most pressing problems facing physical therapy practices.

An integrated medical EMR offers an elegant and efficient solution to provide an enhanced level of patient care, while facilitating collections and reimbursements.

A variety of individual office systems has been available over the years, but software creators and designers have raised the bar with electronic medical records.

The Best Tool

Today’s integrated systems provide a comprehensive array of tools for billing, scheduling, communications and marketing to keep practices profitable and maintain a superior level of patient care.

EMRs are available as web-based software systems that are compatible with a wide array of tablets. Medical EMR software can also be implemented via on-site servers, but require costly hardware and practice owners are responsible for maintaining their own security and remaining HIPAA compliant.

A web-based system is extremely fast and offers computing in the cloud that can be accessed from any venue where an Internet connection is available. The portability of a web-based medical EMR allows therapists to take advantage of new opportunities to increase their stream of revenue.

Clinicians can extend their services into an array of new avenues, from corporate wellness programs, senior facilities, in-home services and even spas. Modern physical therapy treatments and associated services aren’t just for those who require extensive rehabilitation.

Medical EMR

EMRs excel as a point of billing and coding, expediting reimbursement claims and allowing funds to be deposited directly into the clinic’s account. They significantly reduce errors and mistakes that result in rejections and denials.

If a claim is questioned, additional information and documentation can be sent electronically, via medical EMR, to insurance providers and clearinghouses in a matter of moments instead of waiting weeks or even months to cycle through the postal system. medical EMR

A patient portal is an important part of any integrated medical EMR. It provides the means to contact patients by phone, email, and voice and text messaging, and collect insurance information to verify eligibility before the client arrives at the office.

Patient forms can be offered online to eliminate long waits in the office, schedule appointments, post test results and offer pertinent information. A patient portal makes it easy for clients to make secure payments online.

Therapists alleviate pain and improve the quality of life for millions of clients each year and an integrated medical EMR allows clinicians to begin treatment sooner. EMRs enable therapists to access a client’s records to determine previous treatments and their success rate, along with other information pertinent to future services.

Updates Regularly

EMRs allow patient records to be updated immediately and accessed by multiple healthcare providers for the most current information available. A medical EMR is unparalleled as an advertising and marketing tool. Clinicians can easily ascertain where referrals are originating and identify patients that may self-terminate treatment or pose a financial risk to the clinic.

Marketing efforts can be tracked and monitored, and therapists can locate specific demographics on which to focus for future campaigns. An integrated medical EMR will affect every aspect of a physical therapy practice. A system designed specifically for therapy clinics allows users to customize forms and work smart, not hard.

EMRs are fast, efficient and increase the overall productivity of practices. Clinicians can begin treatment sooner for better patient outcomes, while ensuring a steady cash flow for the practice.

How to Verify if Your Software is ICD-10 Ready

How to Verify if Your Software is ICD-10 Ready

The big day for the ICD-10 transition is just around the corner. Practices should have been using their time to train, install hardware and test their software for compatibility with other entities with which they communicate. However, despite the best laid plans and intentions, clinicians may not be as ready as they think. Software systems are a prime consideration and there are steps that practitioners can take to ensure they’re ready when Oct. 1, 2014 arrives.


There are dozens of EMRs available. They have multiple features, but clinicians are often required to pay extra for access to updates and other items that should be included automatically. Practitioners will want to ensure they have an EMR capable of handling the new codes and that they have the latest version available installed.

EMRs must have sufficient security measures for HIPAA compliance to safeguard patient information. Consult with vendors to verify that the EMR is HIPAA compliant, code upgrades are covered in any contracts, and if training will be included.


A crosswalk offers a means of translating ICD-9 codes to the new ICD-10 version. It’s essential that any software include those crosswalks for translation, especially in the early months of the transition. If the EMR doesn’t support crosswalks, clinicians may need to invest in a program to assist with coding tasks.


General Equivalence Mapping isn’t designed for long-term use, but it does provide a valuable resource. It’s a tool that can be used to assist in locating the correct code options and help staff become more fluent and comfortable with the new code selections.

Side-By-Side Coding

Until everyone in the practice is familiar with the new coding system, a side-by-side coding feature will prove very helpful. It will reduce staff frustration and help everyone rest easy knowing they’ve entered the correct diagnosis codes.

A system that allows clinicians and staff to incorporate the new coding into their everyday duties will help everyone become familiar with the new codes before the deadline. They can also begin using the new codes prior to the implementation date with entities that are ready.


It’s critical that in-house or contracted billing services are prepared for ICD-10. They must be compliant with the new HIPAA transaction standards for transmitting data electronically. Be prepared for a reduction in productivity, even with superior billers and coders.


Testing should include the ability to submit claims and insurance eligibility. The only way to ensure if a practice’s software is ready for the ICD-10 transition is to conduct exhaustive testing in those areas – then test some more. If any glitches or issues do exist, the more the system is used the more likely they will be to become apparent. It’s also important that inter-office systems can communicate with each other.

The software that transmitted a claim perfectly today has the potential not to work smoothly tomorrow. Continued testing is the only way to ensure that problems are identified and addressed prior to the deadline. If for some reason an issue can’t be fixed by implementation day, be sure to have a contingency plan. Relationships with new vendors may have to be established, so be prepared.

Significant coding changes will take place with implementation, but if the practice’s software can’t communicate successfully with insurance companies and clearinghouses to submit claims, they’re of no use and will cost clinics dearly in revenues.  Implementation is more than just a coding change. It affects every department. Ensuring the clinic’s software is working correctly will make the transition easier while maintaining revenue levels.

Almost everyone in the medical profession anticipate a loss of income with the implementation of ICD-10. However, some healthcare management and technology firms have postulated that the switch to ICD-10 will present practitioners with opportunities to increase revenues, as it will be easier to document co-morbidities. They also note that the key to increased revenues depends on greater documentation accuracy, one of the stated goals of ICD-implementation.