Managing electronic medical records on behalf of your patients can be time-consuming. One of the best ways to streamline record-keeping is to invest in physical therapy EMR software.
As you might imagine, we spend a lot of time at HENO talking about EMR software for physical therapists and what it should do. While specific needs may vary from practice to practice — for example, a cash-based practice won’t need to worry about insurance billing — most PT practices have a lot in common.
We’ve put together this quick buyer’s guide to help you evaluate physical therapy EMR software before you buy it. Here’s what you need to know.
Features to Look for in Physical Therapy EMR Software
Let’s start by talking about the features and qualities you should look for in your physical therapy EMR software. These are the things we think are most important.
PT-Centric Software. There are lots of EMR systems available but only a few cater specifically to the needs of physical therapists. You’ll have better luck doing what you need to do if you choose an EMR that’s been designed with PT practices in mind.
Intuitive Interface. Some software is easy to use while other solutions require extensive training and preparation. You might not mind a bit of a learning curve, but your best bet is to choose software with an intuitive interface that requires minimal training and experience to use.
HIPAA Compliance and Security. It’s your responsibility as a healthcare provider to ensure that you are compliant with HIPAA regulations and do everything you can to protect your patients’ confidential information. It’s unlikely you’ll stumble across a PT EMR solution that isn’t HIPAA compliant, but make sure you know what you’re buying.
All-in-One Platform. Some physical therapy EMRs offer more comprehensive features than others. One of the reasons we designed HENO was because we hadn’t been able to find a practice management solution that did everything we wanted it to do. You should look for EMR software that includes:
Embedded claims clearinghouse
Credit card processing
Custom reporting. Any EMR you choose should allow you to track your practice’s financials as well as providing a way to track KPIs to assist you with marketing and growth goals.
Integrated billing. Without proper billing, your practice cannot succeed. It’s important to choose a physical therapy EMR that has a fully-integrated billing system, including common diagnosis codes.
Embedded claims clearinghouse. HENO is the only physical therapy EMR to have a fully embedded claims clearinghouse designed by the same company that designed the software. This is a feature that minimizes claims rejections and can save you time and money.
Device agnostic platform. You and your staff should be able to use your physical therapy EMR from your existing computers as well as from mobile devices, regardless of the manufacturer or operating system.
Other features to consider include the ability to send and receive faxes and text messages from patients, and a way of tracking referrals.
Tips for Evaluating Physical Therapy EMRs
We suggest narrowing your choice of EMRs based on the features that are most important to you. Then, you can follow these steps to choose the software that is best suited to your practice.
Check customer ratings. Every physical therapy EMR website will have glowing descriptions of the software’s features. However, the best way to understand how those features work is to read customer reviews. When we evaluate software, we recommend only those options with the highest possible customer ratings. As a rule of thumb, look for EMRs with ratings in the 90th percentile. (4.5 out of 5 stars or higher.)
Request a free demo. A free demo gives you the opportunity to see the EMR you’re considering in action Use the time during your demo to take notes and ask questions of the person leading the demo. If they skip a feature or try to avoid talking about it, insist that they provide you with a complete demo, so you can make a full evaluation of the EMR.
Understand available training and support. Once you choose physical therapy EMR software, you will need proper training to use its features, as well as comprehensive support. As part of your evaluation, make sure to inquire about support features and even test them out by asking a question. You should also look for a company that provides detailed training materials and online resources.
Compare prices. Finally, you’ll need to compare prices. Keep in mind that you should get as close as possible to an apples-to-apples comparison. That may be tricky when platforms have different charges and features. Many cloud based platforms charge a per-provider cost, so make sure that you have a full understanding of what each EMR will cost you before you decide.
Choosing physical therapy EMR software is a big decision. We hope that the guidance we’ve provided here will help you make the best possible choice for your physical therapy practice.
Are you ready to see what HENO’s all-in-one EMR software can do for you? Click here to get a free demo!