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Small Practice Series Pt 2: Your Software Should Grow With You

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Bobbie Byrd

Remember the days when all you needed to grow your small practice was a healthcare provider or two, an office administrator and some comfy waiting room chairs? Well - today's market dictates what you'll need if you want to see operational growth as well as differentiate yourself from competitors. First on the list? A configurable system for your EMR/EHR (electronic medical/health records) that includes features such as patient self-scheduling, interactive reporting, interoperable billing and specialty specific documentation.

Have It Your Way

Before you commit to any specific system, make sure it's one you can configure to meet the needs of patients in your particular healthcare field. A report in the Annals of Family Medicine found that primary care physicians spend an average of about six hours per day on the computer with a majority of that time (almost two-thirds) being spent on clerical and inbox work. The proper software for managing your small practice can go a long way toward alleviating some of these manual administrative tasks and freeing up clinicians' time. 

While technology can improve clinical efficiencies, you don't want to invest in a solution that isn't scalable or one that is so monolithic that it's better suited for hospitals or larger enterprise systems. That being said, no two healthcare practices are alike, so each must adopt a software system that meets the unique needs of its providers and patients. A small practice that's poised to grow should seek out a system that is user-friendly, has a low learning curve, increases staff efficiencies through data-driven automation and fits nicely into your budget.

One Size Does NOT Fit All

Too often the solutions offered to healthcare practices fall into a "one-size-fits-all" platform that can actually create more problems than the system is capable of solving. As your healthcare practice grows, your system needs to grow with it, which means it must be scalable, functional, flexible and cost-effective. That's why you should seek out an easy-to-configure, all-in-one platform that combines intuitive practice management with the patient engagement tools that are necessary to enhance patient care, optimize productivity and streamline your practice's operations. 

The logical answer to this conundrum is a low code or no code software platform. These types of platforms offer multiple benefits for emerging practices that are looking for solutions but can easily be overwhelmed by colossal, complex systems developed for hospitals and massive medical conglomerates.

What's the difference? A no-code platform is exactly what the name suggests: software that doesn't require any coding to set up the system; whereas a low-code application platform, or LCAP, allows your practice to easily make modifications - so much so that often your team can handle required changes in-house with or without the help of technology experts. 

Stay In Touch

Technology for healthcare is so much different from most other management software platforms. For one thing, confidential patient records trigger HIPAA regulations, but any provider will be quick to tell you that what's most important is that information can be readily and securely accessed or shared. 

In a small healthcare practice, the amount of time spent interacting with an EMR/EHR can cut a good chunk of time out of personal engagement with your patients. When staff have to spend more and more time on non-patient care activities, such as billing, scheduling, filling out evaluations or correlating various data points for everyone from local health departments to insurance companies, not only can the quality of patient care suffer but clinical burnout could raise its ugly head. 

The solution is to make certain you are automating as much of the overall data collection, record maintenance, scheduling, billing and collection activities as possible, so that your staff is freed up to provide the excellent level of patient care everyone wants to give and every patient deserves to receive. It won't take long for word-of-mouth to spread about the exceptional, thorough and cost-effective care patients receive at your practice, so much so, that your small practice may take off faster than you expect! Click here to elevate your digital marketing strategy and learn how to optimize your presence on social media. 

When it's all said and done, there's really only one thing that matters when it comes to the software you choose for your growing healthcare practice. Determine what exactly you want the technology to do, how much flexibility you want in your platform when it comes to customization of features and what your budget looks like, then contact us for the perfect software fit for your practice.

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