|Electronic Patient Records|
Moving from paper to electronic patient records is a choice most doctors have saved until "last minute". After all, the status quo that is paper medical records has worked for over a hundred years for the medical profession, so why change?
Recently, however, doctors and clinic managers have discovered that as their practices grow, paper patient records become more of a liability to an efficiently run practice than anything else. Moving to an electronic patient records system solves a lot of issues for a growing practice, and saves money both in the short and long term.
EMR: The New Must Have
What many doctors do not realize about the electronic patient records portion of the Federal Stimulus plan of 2009 (which provides up to $44,000 in Medicare and $64,000 in Medicaid refunds for "meaningful use" of EMR), is that NOT adopting actually does have its penalties.
In an effort to standardize electronic patient records, thus saving the industry billions of dollars in billing and other costs, the Federal Government is pushing hard for widespread use of electronic patient records software. This push also includes the caveat that if your practice DOES NOT adopt electronic patient records (otherwise known as EMR or EHR) into your practice by 2015, penalties will occur!
What this means is that if you refuse to adopt EMR software in your practice, in 2015, a 1% Medicare payment reduction will occur. Waiting until 2016 doubles that EMR penalty to 2%, while 2017 and later ensures that your Medicare rebates will be shrunk by 3%!
All of these points add up to one simple equation: having an electronic patient records software system installed in your practice now is by far the best option, as your rebates alone will likely cover the system's cost. "Waiting it out", meanwhile, is costlier than you might expect.
The Adoption Process
Throughout this site, we offer several articles which explain in-depth the EMR adoption process, and how it works. As a basic summary, adopting electronic patient records into your practice includes these stages:
Each one of these stages features important steps which ensure that your electronic patient records software will create efficiencies and provide return on investment in as short of a time period as possible.
The first stage, Planning, is by far the "Master Stage", as it controls all of the subtleties of the stages to follow. Be sure that when you choose a vendor and consultant, the planning stage is focus number one. Experienced electronic patient record providers understand that superior planning leads to superior results, and as we've seen time and time again, a well run clinic!
It's Not Too Late
The electronic patient record portion of the Federal Stimulus bill is scheduled to expire in 2010. Acting now means the kind Medicare redemption bonuses that may actually pay for not only a full EMR package, but an integrated medical practice management software system as well. Our representatives are ready to take your practice that one step forward today.
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Electronic Medical Record
Electronic Medical Records