5 questions to ask before selecting and choosing an EHR

5 questions to ask before selecting and choosing an EHR

EHRs are designed to make the healthcare process easier for everyone. However, not all EHRs are made equal, and some fall short. Whether you’re shopping for your first EHR or upgrading an existing system, make sure to research thoroughly to find the best fit for your business. It’s a two-step approach to find the best EHR. To begin, assess your current system to determine its strengths and limitations. You can start looking for a new EHR once you’ve figured out what’s working and what needs to be improved.

Evaluate your current EHR

There are bound to be benefits and drawbacks if you already have an EHR. You’ll want to make the best option for your clinic because EHRs can be expensive. Begin by assessing your current system and asking yourself these questions.

Does your EHR improve the efficiency of your practice?

It’s time to start exploring for a better fit if your clinic has fully deployed an EHR but isn’t seeing greater efficiency in day-to-day operations.

Do you have the resources you need for your current EHR in your practice?

How is your EHR going on a day-to-day basis? It’s time to look elsewhere if you’re always encountering technological issues that take staff time to handle, reducing workflow and raising stress levels.

To assess how things are going with your present EHR, ask yourself the following questions:

  • How frequently do you require assistance from your EHR vendor?
  • How much of your staff’s time is dedicated to EHR support?
  • Is your vendor’s support free?
  • Do you get assistance from a real person? If no one is accessible to help, are there any alternative training options (videos, webinars, instruction pages, forums)?

Is your EHR cost-effective?

Research shows, over a five-year period, medical offices can spend more than $50,000 to completely adopt an EHR. You’ll need a system that delivers on its promises. If this seems excessive, keep in mind that EHR costs are continuing to climb. If you’re going to spend the money, the system has to work for you. If it doesn’t, it’s time to look for something that’s better suited to your practice.

5 questions to ask before selecting and choosing an EHR

You may plan for a new EHR after evaluating your present system. Here are some things to think about as you shop.

1. Will this EHR meet our current and future practice needs?

Healthcare is ever-changing, and you need an EHR that will work now and in the future. Make a list of needs, both the must-haves and the nice-to-haves, while assessing a new EHR. Ask the EHR vendor if their system satisfies your criteria using this list.

Ask these questions:

  • Is it simple to operate?
  • How does this EHR ensure that my files are kept safe and private?
  • What methods are used to back up files?
  • Is it simple to integrate this EHR? Will we be able to communicate with other billing systems and public health databases?
  • Is this EHR compliant with HIPAA regulations?
  • Will this EHR help or hinder my practice’s growth in the future?
  • Will new employees be able to quickly learn how to utilise this EHR?
  • Is it up to date and constructed in such a way that it may easily be improved in the future?

2. How effective is this EHR in terms of cost?

EHR pricing can be confusing; some have high sticker prices, some are less expensive but have a lot of “hidden” expenses, yet others are free but lack support.

Questions to ask :

  • What is the first investment?
  • Is it necessary for us to purchase licences? How often must they be renewed?
  • Are upgrades available for free?
  • Is there a charge for connecting to imaging centres and labs?
  • Is it necessary for us to upgrade our existing hardware?
  • Is there a cost for any of the events? What about e-prescribing, for example?
  • What would happen if I added more providers or locations?

3. What types of assistance are provided?

Even with a well-functioning EHR, one may encounter minor problems. To get the most out of an EHR, one needs accessible and helpful customer service.

Questions for EHR providers :

  • What kind of support can we expect from the EHR vendor before, during, and after the implementation? 
  • Do you provide unrestricted, free support? If not, what are the costs?
  • Do you provide live assistance? Are there any seminars, forums, videos, or other resources available if we require support outside of office hours?
  • How will you assist in resolving problems if they arise?

4. What should we expect in the way of transition?

Because efficiency is so important in a medical business, you’ll want an EHR that can be set up quickly. Cloud-based EHRs eliminate the need to purchase and install new gear, and they may be up and operating in a short amount of time.

Questions to ask

  • Do you give training to your employees?
  • Do you provide scanning services for paper files? Do you need to send electronic files?
  • Can you provide us with an estimate of how long it will take to implement our practice?
  • What is your approach to data migration? Who is in charge of what?

5. Is the EHR certified CMS?

Practices require an EHR that accurately systematically records information. EHRs must adhere to the criteria and standards set forth by the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) to participate in government-sponsored incentive programmes. Your EHR must be appropriately certified to qualify for Meaningful Use (Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs) payments.

Questions to ask EHR provider : 

  • Is this EHR qualified for Meaningful Use?
  • With this EHR, what Meaningful Use programmes may we participate in?
Conclusion

These are 5 questions to ask before selecting and choosing an EHR.
You may contact Drucare to meet those standards after the evaluation. Finding the right match for your medical practice will help you improve the efficiency of your daily operations. Happy staff equals happy patients, resulting in a more pleasant healthcare experience for all.

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