When selecting an EHR, ophthalmology practices often hear stories about how the new system will save time and bring in patients. Yet, many practices have invested in the wrong system and never live out these success stories. In fact, one 2021 study found the wrong EHR slows down administrative work for ophthalmology practices more than not having a system at all.
That same study contrasts the wrong solution with using an ophthalmology EHR with the necessary features. The latter brings about lasting administrative improvements. To better understand why, let’s dive into the expected (and unexpected) benefits of an optimized ophthalmology EHR.
The Expected Transformation for Your Ophthalmology Practice
With an ophthalmology EHR, your entire administrative flow can change. Your team no longer enters data in multiple places or navigates through a complicated interface each time they need to update patient records. Instead, they utilize a streamlined workflow designed for ophthalmology practices, not every healthcare practice out there.
With this new workflow, you reduce the administrative burden on your team, increase office efficiency, and are able to take in more patients each day. For a better idea of what the switch looks like, check out how it transformed these practices:
- Boling Vision Center used to take 90-120 minutes from check-in to checkout for a dilated eye exam. After switching to an ophthalmology EHR, they brought that time down to 50-75 minutes.
- Pima Eye Institute spends 10 minutes less on administrative work per patient with their new EHR.
- Eye Care Center of Napa Valley found an ophthalmology EHR with great customer support. Now, they not only have an efficient system, but also a partner to troubleshoot any IT issues or answer any questions.
The Avoided Pitfalls of a General or Outdated EHR
On the flip side of the transformation are the pitfalls of sticking with your current EHR. With an older, general system, your practice wastes time because older EHRs are unnecessarily complex. Plus, they don’t have smooth integrations with your PM, billing system, and other administrative tools. Your team has to piecemeal their way through healthcare administration, moving data between systems manually.
Another pitfall of a general EHR is that it’s not always compliant with security regulations. As an ophthalmologist, you have enough to worry about. Legality and protecting patient information shouldn’t be another stressor on the list. The right EHR ensures you can focus on what matters, while regulatory issues are dealt with in the background.
The Surprise Benefits of an Ophthalmology EHR
When switching to a new EHR, many of the benefits — and avoided harms — are obvious. You get a better workflow, the ability to increase patient volume, and protect patient information. But with all that saved time and headspace, there are some sneaky benefits your practice can take advantage of too.
The first is improved charting. Charting can play a crucial role in educating patients about their eye health. With this added benefit, you offer clients a more transparent experience, increasing the likelihood they will come back and refer friends to your practice.
The right ophthalmology EHR also will integrate with your marketing efforts. This synchronization allows you to send automated messages to prospective patients, remind current patients about upcoming appointments, and notify your email list about new promotions. Some EHRs also provide analytics and automated reports, which provide useful data to improve marketing efforts.
With optimized marketing on autopilot and happy patients giving referrals, your practice can increase the bottom line, without spending more time in your practice.
Along with increasing your revenue, the right system also boosts your MIPS score and makes billing easier. California Laser & Eye found that out when they switched to an ophthalmology EHR. With this new program, their MIPS score improved, and administrative staff spent less time on billing.
Your Unique Edge
Most importantly, your practice is devoted to providing excellent care for your patients. The expected benefits, avoided pitfalls, and surprise advantages of an EHR all make an impact on the patient experience. Switching your administrative system to one that’s specific to your specialty might seem like a minor difference, but the right ophthalmology EHR puts your patients first. In turn, patients return, refer friends, and maintain better eye health.
When looking at systems, consider Nextech's ophthalmology EHR. Our single, specialty-specific solution can help your practice simplify the delivery of excellent patient care.
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