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Warning Signs You’re Choosing the Wrong Medical Software Company

virtual practice management software

Electronic medical records and their slightly more comprehensive siblings, electronic health records, are getting better. While many physicians used to focus on bare-bones basic systems — adoption of basic systems by office-based physicians went up 21% between 2012 and 2013 alone — practices are getting smarter about choosing systems that will set them up to receive federal incentives and improve their overall efficiency. Currently, about three-fourths of physicians with EHR systems report that they’re capable of demonstrating “meaningful use” as defined by federal departments.

But if you’re looking at medical software companies for the first time, it can still be very overwhelming, especially since choosing the wrong one to handle your EHR or EMR software can be a very expensive mistake. Here are five red flags to watch out for:

  1. They Don’t Integrate All Your Systems
    If you’re just looking into medical software solutions now, a basic electronic record system probably isn’t the best route. Instead, you should be looking for a complete virtual practice management software that will digitize your records but also facilitate appointment scheduling, ordering and billing. There’s simply no reason not to integrate all those tasks.

  3. They Have Zero Clients in Your Specialty
    When it comes to record-keeping, different things tend to matter more in different specialties. If a software company has no clients with your same specialty, you may want to turn to a company with more experience within your narrower scope.

  5. They Don’t Run or Help You Run Reports
    One of the incentives of using virtual practice management software is increased efficiency; complete electronic record-keeping has been shown to improve overall efficiency by 6% annually. But one way you can improve your processes is by being able to see compiled data more clearly, and that means it should be easy for you to pull reports at any time.

  7. They’re Stingy With Their References
    If a medical software company either won’t give you direct references or will only give you a very limited pre-printed list of references to contact, that’s a bad sign. Privacy is important in the medical world, of course, but that really shouldn’t affect your being able to talk to other physicians who have used a company’s software.

  9. They Offer Very Limited Customer Service
    Virtual practice management software has the capability to transform the way your practice operates. But a software system like this is complicated, and it’s not something you should expect to just install and use with no direction. You should be choosing a company that offers training and extensive ongoing support.

Can you think of any other signs of a good or bad medical software company? Join the discussion in the comments.