Physical Therapy Software Best Choices

Physical Therapy Software Best Choices

Before buying a physical therapy software, make sure you know what your practice needs. Nitin Chhoda shares the one question every practitioner should ask first, before they can choose the best software that is right for their practice.

physical therapy softwarePhysical therapy software system affects your entire experience depending on what type of EMR you choose.

For some practices, price is a dominant factor. But cutting corners can backfire, and most cheap physical therapy software is going to cut some corners.

Before you decide what you can spend, think about what you need. If the EMR you choose doesn’t work for you, it probably won’t be worth any amount of money.

Look at Your Practice First

The first step towards choosing the right web-based physical therapy software is looking at what your practice will need. You’ve likely heard that EMRs for physical therapy software and services can increase efficiency and improve your bottom line. That’s only true if you’ve got some inefficiency that can be reduced with an EMR.

Ask yourself a few questions. Is your medical billing conducted on a regular and timely schedule? What is the percentage of rejected or denied claims you receive? Is your staff slightly overwhelmed with paperwork? How often do errors occur that upset your patients?

If you are having trouble in any of these areas, and most practices have more than one of these problems, it is very likely that physical therapy software can help. Scheduling, billing, and patient management are integrated in good PT documentation software. Does that sound like something that will reduce the number of steps each staff member has to take to do their job? Good.

Understanding the Benefits

physical therapy software best choiceAs soon as you know what you need, you can develop some goals. These goals for your practice should be independent of whether or not you get physical therapy software.

But if you design your goals around what will improve efficiency and your bottom line, then you will be ready to ask the most important question: will this physical therapy management solution help us to meet our goals?

If billing is your main concern because you get a lot of claim rejections and denials that need to be re-filed, then make sure that the billing system is integrated and comprehensive in the physical therapy software you are considering.

If one of your goals is to improve the professionalism in your office with a sophisticated system, make sure that the system actually provides improved consistency in billing, patient care, and communication.

Choose the Best Physical Therapy Software for Your Practice

Remember that EMR implementation can be taxing and frustrating for staff. Make sure that the physical therapy software company offers training and instruction for staff, both before, during, and after implementation.

Lastly, no matter what kind of physical therapy software you choose, make sure that it is intuitive to use. The most important thing about any physical therapy software is that it will be easy for your staff to use. You want the staff to become more efficient, right? Do not sacrifice intuitive interfaces and useful tools for a better price, because you will not get the results that you want if your staff can’t use the software.

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 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.