Doctors’ offices, hospitals, clinics, and other medical facilities – just like all businesses – need to be run both efficiently and effectively in order to be profitable. While most doctors focus on being effective by carefully treating their patients, many could use medical practice management (MPM) software in order to help with the efficiency part.
When medical practitioners adopt an MPM system, they are able to treat more patients in less time, collect patients’ payments more quickly, reduce labor costs, and streamline workflow to reduce the overall time they, and their staff, spend on clerical duties around the office. That leads to a healthier bottom line and more healthy patients – a pretty compelling argument for investing in software!
Note: Medical practice management solutions are proven to save up to 2 hours per day on administrative functions, which can equate to tens of thousands of dollars saved over the course of a year. (And even more depending on how many practitioners work at your practice)
How Do I Know if I Need MPM Software?
If your organization is facing the following challenges, then now might be a good time to invest in Medical Practice Management software. Is your organization:
Having trouble collecting payments from patients on time?
- Use MPM to keep track of patient payment histories, including insurance payments and co-pays, in one centralized, easy-to-access location
- Pull reports to quickly see overdue payments or unpaid patient tickets
- Automate patient communications through email, phone, or direct mail with bill payment reminders
Using multiple applications to handle scheduling, billing and insurance, patient records, and inventory management?
- Consolidate your stand-alone applications into one interface
- Cross-reference information on any particular patient (appointment schedules, demographic info, etc.) without having to switch between systems
- Create more accurate and comprehensive reports with all of your data stored in the same system
Taking too long to follow-up with patients on referrals, test results, billing questions, etc?
- Integrate your patient demographic information in your MPM with medical records from your EMR so information is easy to disseminate
- Schedule patient communications, requests to pharmacies and labs, and insurance claims at the time of the patient’s appointment
- Route inquiries and referrals to the proper office staff so nothing goes unanswered
Waiting forever for insurance claims to be processed and to receive reimbursements?
- Look for a HIPAA-compliant solution to speed up insurance reimbursements
- Quickly check claims and edit for regulatory compliance before submission
- File claims electronically and track when they’ve been accepted or rejected
Struggling to keep track of patient appointment schedules and office staff schedules?
- Maintain a master appointment schedule, including regularly scheduled appointments, as well as cancellations, rescheduling and walk-ins
- Reduce the confusion of multiple schedules and documents by giving all office staff electronic access to the same master calendar
- Track productivity by physician, office, patient, insurance company, diagnosis or procedure
Not sure what inventory you have in stock and consistently running out of necessary supplies?
- Reconcile actual counts of in-stock items with inventory levels in the system, and receive alerts when inventory levels drop too low
- “Check out” or assign supplies and medications to patient tickets as they need them
- Generate more accurate reports of on-hand items and sort lists by expiration dates, manufacturers, and more
Planning to implement an EMR?
- Invest in the two systems simultaneously to simplify implementation and adoption
- Import both your patient medical records and office records into the EMR & MPM software once so that they are all up-to-date and in sync
- Look for an MPM system and an EMR that work together (or are built by the same vendor) so that information can flow freely between the two
If these challenges sound familiar, then you’ve identified significant business needs for considering medical practice management software. While all of these scenarios may not apply to your facility, it is important that any medical practice management software you consider fits your facility’s specific needs.
Medical practices will benefit the most from practice management software if they…
- Are falling behind in processing paperwork and need a better way to store documents (and reduce storage space).
- Spend a lot of time switching between stand-alone packages for billing, scheduling and other administrative functions.
- Don’t have an efficient scheduling system that allows for real-time updates and universal access.
- Do not have a good process for scrubbing insurance claims and, when they do bill insurance companies, are not receiving quick reimbursements and patient payments.
- Are losing track of what inventory they have on hand and would like a way to better manage store levels.
Recent Medical Practice Management Trends
- With the economy still in flux, medical practices have an increased focus on eliminating wasteful processes, better managing insurance claims, and improving their bottom line. As a result, several new technology vendors have emerged to meet these demands – particularly SaaS or web-based solutions.
- As doctors move to tablet computing to collect and record patient information, mobile apps and mobile accessibility is a big focus for MPM providers.
- With the 2014 US EMR-adoption deadline looming, doctors are often starting their search for an EMR first and then looking for an MPM that complements their system.