Electronic medical software will automate the manual processes and, as a result, streamline the whole workflow in your organization. Sure thing, it will benefit the quality of care for your patients, as you’ll be able to track their medical history and maintain communication in one place. Interested in learning more about how such software works? Keep reading our article to figure all about electronic medical record software.
What is EHR, the definition of the electronic medical record, and why should you care?
According to the statistics, EHR/EMR adoption rates are higher than ever at around 89%.
Let’s start with the electronic health record definition and what is an EHR. EHR / EMR software is a system where healthcare providers can keep all the patient medical records, create and store templates for taking notes about patient history, share and create reports, communicate with everyone within the healthcare organization, and even treat patients remotely and prescribe medications online.
Electronic medical record software helps healthcare providers minimize mistakes during patient care and treat their patients faster and more efficiently. Electronic health record systems may include a range of data, including demographics, medical history, medication and allergies, immunization status, laboratory test results, radiology images, vital signs, personal statistics like age and weight, billing, and ICD-10 information.
EMR helps to improve diagnosis and treatment, eliminate errors in personal health records, and help healthcare practitioners make faster decisions relying on relevant data. When it comes to doctors, the advantages are the following: doctors can quickly migrate patient data from one department to the next, create more space in the digital records environment, increase the number of patients served per day and as a result — improve productivity and process patient billing more effectively.
EHR also makes a huge contribution to patient safety. Electronic medical health records eliminate the number of hand transcribed errors and the problem of misplaced or even lost files of the patients.
Electronic medical record software: How it works
If you want to develop electronic medical record software, you need to understand the process of its implementation from the very beginning. Usually, it consists of the following steps:
- The patient submits digital medical records and info about their previous medical treatments, surgeries, allergies, and other individual specifics. After this information is verified, the patient gains access to their online medical account and can view aspects of their visit, appointments, prescriptions, electronic medical record, etc.
- The system automatically syncs with the doctor’s schedule and online calendar, where patients can book free spots.
- After the patient books a visit, the doctor gets an appointment notification and checks the patient-specific details in an electronic chart. After the visit, the doctor inputs the diagnosis, step-by-step plan for further actions, and prescriptions into the software.
- The system generates the list of the prescriptions and gives this information to the drugstore.
- The electronic health record system platform automatically generates the bill, and the financial department hands it to the patient.
- The system creates the insurance claim according to the requirements of the patient’s insurance provider.
- The electronic medical system can also grant access to the medical test laboratory, so the patient and the doctor can access the test results in one place.
Types of medical record software and their difference
Before choosing the type of software, you need to understand your goals first. The right software depends on the needs and abilities of individual medical providers. Let’s see the most common types.
Cloud-Based EMR Software
With cloud-based EMR software, doctors and patients can access the data online with remote access. All the patient medical information is stored not in the server but in the cloud, making it the most affordable option. Cloud-based software is also called Web-based or Software-as-a-Service (SaaS).
Mac EMR Software
Mac EMR software is a type of software that is compatible with all Apple devices. There are Mac-native options designed exclusively for the Mac operating system or cloud- or web-based software options that work on any Apple device, but to use them, you need to have access to the Internet.
ONC-Certified EMR Software
ONC-certified EMR software is software that meets requirements set by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) that focus on the proper management and storage of sensitive patient data.
This software is tested and verified by bodies authorized by the ONC for testing and certification based on certain criteria. These criteria include patient portal access, a place to create care plans, quality reporting methods, and more.
Behavioral/Mental Health EMR Software
EMRs for behavioral and mental health providers focus on the needs of mental health clinics, therapists, and group clinics and make the work of a therapist or mental health physician more efficient.
How to implement EHRs in your organization and use electronic medical record data
The most important thing to remember here is to take the time to implement EMR thoughtfully and don’t forget about your primary goals.
Create the EMR road map
Start with creating a checklist of all the steps you anticipate will need to be completed and the people in your organization responsible for each of these tasks: healthcare providers, managers, IT staff, and patients. Make sure to include such critical tasks as stakeholder recruitment, budget planning, scheduling implementation, transferring data, etc.
Decide on your budget and main expenses
The exact cost of EMR implementation will depend on both the software's features and the size of your organization. Make sure to include such expenses as hardware and network upgrades, vendor training and consultant fees, data backups and storage, and cost per employee. As for the timeline, most facilities will be up and running in six to nine months.
Configure the EMR system and EHR electronic health records
A system configuration means programming in the location of your practice and the providers who will be using the system, designing your practice's clinical workflow, and creating clinical templates. Templates should meet the Meaningful Use and Physician Quality Reporting System standards outlined by federal regulations.
“An important component of putting a complete PM and EHR system in place is conducting a data import from the legacy system to the new system. A new software system will not automatically convert patients from one system to another. This is a complex process that technical experts must facilitate."
— Adam Siegel, an EHR consultant, told Business News Daily in an earlier interview.
Optimize the workflow and train your team
There are many training options, from self-paced distance learning, which is the most affordable and simplest, to on-site, instructor-led training, which is a comprehensive, in-person program.
"The most crucial thing when planning an electronic medical software is to visualize your main goals and put in place the right tools to achieve them.”
— Vlad Medvedovsky, CEO at Proxet (ex - Rails Reactor) - a custom software development company.
Benefits of electronic health records software
The benefits of EHR technologies for medical professionals are the following:
Electronic medical records bring benefits for both patient care and the quality of work of family physicians. Nowadays, physicians need to keep up with a range of information. It isn't easy sometimes to catch up on everything having a big volume of work and clients. This is where digital data systems come for help. Electronic medical records help to improve access to information and relationships, effectively transforming how physicians conduct their practice.
Using Electronic medical records at your practice is one of the best ways to bring down overall expenditure. According to many resources, including a study published by The American Journal of Medicine, EMR systems can have a positive impact on your financial investment. The use of EMRs can lead to savings on drug expenditure, quicker and efficient recording and reporting of billing services, better service in radiologic diagnostics, and lesser billing errors.
Improving Information Processing
EMR systems collect, compile and provide information in a manner that isn’t possible with paper files and represent this information in the form of graphs and pie charts. Data systems display values of cholesterol levels, and blood pressure, and weight, allowing physicians to track any changes that have taken place over time. It’s also much easier to manage chronic diseases and screening targets, improving the quality of care provided to patients. Moreover, such systems can also remind doctors when screening measures and prevention methods are outdated, prompting them to adopt new ones.
There’s one thing we can be sure of today: the future of the healthcare industry is digital. They all unite within the Internet of Medical Things: a combination of different medical devices and applications that connect to healthcare IT systems through an online computer network.
There’s one thing we can be sure of today: the future of the healthcare industry is digital. They all unite within the Internet of Medical Things: a combination of different First of all, all clinics and hospitals should have software that helps them work with the clients and transmit information between other clinics and doctors. However, who will be responsible for the development of such software? From one point of view, the clinics can wait till the government develops a system that everyone will use. How much time will it take? No one knows. From another point of view, a clinic can develop the system on its own and start to implement technological changes now. Later on, they will be able to transmit all information to other platforms if necessary.
If you are planning to improve the performance of your clinic or hospital now, we at Proxet will gladly help you with the development of any kind of healthcare software. Contact us whenever you are ready to implement the newest technologies in your business.
Learn a step-by-step framework for constructing an optimal modern data stack — hear Proxet's CTO cover crucial elements like build vs buy choices, open source tools, typical mistakes, and how we can assist.
Build a modern data stack by following best practices from data engineering experts. Learn about data maturity, data stack components, and how to build.