Many factors are involved when an eye care practice decides to switch electronic health record (EHR) software. Some of the potential reasons that lead to switching vendors are poor customer service, lack of advanced features in the existing system, high cost, and Meaningful Use certification.
According to a recent review, system functionality and cost were the two largest deciding factors in switching EHR software. In another report, physicians wanted EHRs to be more intuitive and responsive. Industry experts also think that user interface and interoperability could be the other top reasons for switching EHRs in 2020 and beyond.
Confused about how to select the right EHR software for your practice? Read this guide here.
In addition to the reasons mentioned above, several others contribute to an eye care practice’s decision to jump ship from its current EHR vendor.
Understanding when to Switch EHR Software
One of the biggest challenges in switching EHRs is to recognize when it’s time to move on. When push comes to shove, or when you feel your practice’s efficiency going down, it’s time to start searching for your next EMR software.
Here’re some of the reasons to begin evaluating new EHR software:
- Specialty-specific EHR: An EHR that does not align with your ophthalmology practice’s daily workflow will reduce your efficiency (and profitability).Often,eye care practitioners using generic EHRs are dissatisfied with the lack of specialty-specific features. And no matter how much they try to alter their workflow or train their staff, a generic EHR just won’t do justice to their unique requirements. So, if you are on a shopping spree looking for a specialty-focused EHR, sit down with your team and make a list of your needs and goals. Evaluate the vendors knowing precisely what your old EHR software lacked and accordingly create a list of must-haves, to, good–to–have features in your new EHR.
- Unresponsive Vendor: According to research, almost 44% of EHR users switch to another system primarily because of an unresponsive vendor. As an ophthalmologist or an orthopedic surgeon, your inability to use EHR software effectively due to system-related problems or technical snags will translate to revenue and productivity loss. The lack of support or shoddy customer service will act as a driver to make you look around for a new vendor. When evaluating potential vendors for the new EHR software, make sure your vendor provides robust user training and customer support, and can help you every step of the way.
- Shift to Cloud-based Software:While there are numerous positives and negatives regarding client server-based and cloud-based EHR software, data security, cost savings, and anytime, anywhere data access are some of the few benefits of cloud-based systems. A cloud-based EHR software allows more flexibility and safety and is more cost-effective. In addition to increased scalability, cloud-based EHRs eliminate the time and money required to deploy additional staff for on-site solutions. This means, instead of having your own in-house IT team to handle problems that occur, the vendor’s support department will manage troubleshooting, updates, or repairs. Depending on your eye care practice’s unique needs, you may consider a vendor that offers end-to-end support.
- Improve Provider Productivity: Is your existing EHR taking too much of your time? EHR should make your doctors more efficient. However, if you feel that your system’s complex features hinder your staff’s productivity, it’s time to start evaluating other options. System efficiency is a vast term and may include factors like integration or exchange capabilities with other systems in your practice, the number of clicks required to complete a transaction, etc. For instance, if your staff has to log into an EHR to access patient information and then log into a separate practice management system to get to billing data, the amount of time wasted switching between systems takes a toll on the user’s productivity. Your eye care practice needs will increase in the coming years, and implementing a unified system is the best way to support long-term growth.
Even if one reason mentioned above rings a bell in your ears, it’s time to switch your EHR software. Protecting your practice revenue and staff’s productivity should be your primary goal, even if that means cutting ties with a system that doesn’t fulfill your needs. It is up to you to recognize the red flags and evaluate other options on the market that better fit your needs. With the right EHR system in place, in addition to your practice and staff, even your patients will benefit immensely.
Want to switch EHR software? Looking for a reputed vendor with experience in the eye care industry? Contact us to discuss your needs and learn about our cloud-based, specialty-specific EHRs. We will be happy to schedule a live demo to show we can help you achieve your productivity and revenue goals.