Avoid These Obstacles When Buying Medical Software

If someone asked you what the biggest obstacles to buying medical software were, what would you tell them? Would you say that sorting out what features you want it to have is the biggest? Or figuring out how to transition from one system to the other? Or would you say that it’s getting the doctors in your practice to agree on a particular product?

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All of these are factors you should consider when buying a new system. However, as it turns out, the two biggest challenges medical practices face when investing in medical software seem to be time and money. Finding the time to go through the buying process, deciding how much they could afford to spend and creating room in the budget were the challenges that rose to the top in recent research we did.

Over the last 18 months, we asked medical practices how they went about purchasing EMRs and practice management systems, including what problems they faced in going through the process. We asked them what features they wanted in new systems, what technologies were important to them, what frustrated them about their existing software and what obstacles they faced when selecting and paying for a new system.

As it turned out, the practices that we spoke with didn’t have much trouble figuring out what they wanted from EMRs and practice management software. Virtually everyone (92%) said they wanted their new systems to include billing options, and a decent majority prioritized charting (62%). They also wanted systems that could integrate with labs (55%), something that’s become increasingly important as a means of improving practice efficiency.

Our research also found that choosing a method for managing the software wasn’t exactly controversial. Two-thirds of practices we spoke with said they wanted to have a vendor host their EMR or practice management system, and access it online. Another 32% said they were willing to consider either online-only access or on-premise installation of the software.

When it came to replacing an existing system, practice leaders cited a lack of features (22%), inefficiency (20%) and a need for too much manual work as the most common reasons for wanting to upgrade their existing systems.

Given this level of clarity, one might guess that these practices wouldn’t find it too difficult to buy new medical software. As it turns out, though, they felt they didn’t have some key resources. Almost every respondent (91%) said they had trouble finding the time to research new systems, and 90% said they struggled to find the budget to pay for the new system.

How, then, do you stop worries over time and money from hampering your medical software search? Here are some ideas on how to address time concerns:

Meanwhile, consider these criteria when developing an appropriate budget for medical software:

Even if you bear these principles in mind, you may still find the medical software buying process to be a strain at times. In fact, it’s almost guaranteed, given how important this software will be to your business.

However, finding the time and money to make your medical software investment doesn’t have to be a huge burden. If you do plan the process carefully, you might even find that you enjoy it!

Get the top ranked EMR/EHR Systems Comparison Matrix.