Photo: Medical Professional Working on a ComputerThere are intricacies to managing different types of healthcare specialties, but those that work in mental and behavioral health face distinct challenges. Multiple case studies have been done on the value of EMR software for mental health practices, yet finding the right fit can be difficult because EMR software features vary widely and not all will meet the pressing needs of mental health professionals.

The daily operations of running a mental health practice involve different types of billing, management of bed availability and the fact that patients often have the option of being cared for not only on an inpatient or outpatient basis but also partial inpatient, making effectively managing medical records more complex.

As advancements in technology and software have been made, it’s become necessary for the healthcare industry to adapt to a highly digitalized world. Not only is it important for maintaining an efficient practice, but it’s also crucial for providing top-level patient care. When many mental health practices begin looking at EMR and behavioral health billing software, they aren’t always sure what to look for. To help you in the process, here are the top 4 features of EMR software that matter to mental health practices.

Clinical Documentation

One of the primary features required by mental health professionals is software that provides a secure, transparent method of maintaining patient records that also allows easy access to the staff. This means that for EMR software to be efficient for the mental health industry, it must include a number of unique capabilities. Staff must be able to accurately record and assess crucial information, such as medications, mental health risk factors, outcomes, and professional notes.

Proper clinical documentation also makes the onboarding process for new patients easier and more comprehensive my automating intake forms and other key components of new patient records to make sure that all the right information is obtained to provide top-level patient care.

Mental Health Billing Software

Mental health billing software is equipped to handle the challenges that can cause endless headaches for your staff. For example, there are often multiple payers associated with each patient record. EMR software should be able to automatically track the number of authorized visits and the cap on allowed dollar amounts. Another important feature is the ability to automatically check for insurance coverage through electronic insurance eligibility verification.

Scheduling

Outpatient mental health services might have many of the same practices and procedures in place as other types of specialties. However, inpatient services require a different approach altogether with scheduling. As patients are on waiting lists for available beds, the automation of EMR software can ensure an easy transition for the right patient.

Other scheduling features that are important for mental health professionals include group scheduling capabilities, along with copayment props and automated appointment reminders.

Revenue Management and Reporting

Finally, it’s crucially important to be able to assess the profitability and success of your mental health practice. EMR software should provide ample analysis and tracking options to measure the financial health and revenue of your practice. This is a valuable feature considering that this type of reporting isn’t something that your office staff is focusing on daily.

Is your mental health practice in need of an efficient, professional and profitable EMR software system? We have the solutions to help. Contact Raintree Systems today to learn about our software tailored to the mental health community.