For both small family practices and big clinics, the potential benefits of properly implemented medical clinic software can’t be underestimated. Having a way to automate many of your administrative and management tasks can completely change the way practices allocate their time and resources.
Inefficient time management is a big problem in the medical industry. A recent Swiss study revealed that the ratio of time spent with patients is too low compared to the time spent on administrative tasks. This is a trend that’s been consistent for the past 50 years and, until recently, there didn’t seem to be an easy solution.
Without an efficient and digitized system, a clinic was always stuck in an endless cycle of paperwork that needed to be filled out, sorted, stored and handled by a staff of administrative employees.
But with the innovations in medical clinic software, this doesn’t have to be the case any longer.
What is Medical Clinic Software?
The main purpose of medical clinic software is to help clinics and medical practices efficiently handle their day-to-day operations.
Medical clinic software, otherwise known as medical practice management software or simply MPM, can completely change how medical organizations run their operations. It provides efficient solutions for billing, scheduling, outreach and reminders for patients. It also allows clinics to automate the numerous time-consuming tasks that used to require manual labor, saving precious time that used to be wasted.
In some instances, medical clinic software offers extensive features that go beyond the scheduling and revenue-cycle functions. They can incorporate electronic medical records (EMR) systems into the functionality.
The Difference Between Medical Clinic Software and EMR Systems
While electronic medical records systems (EMR) systems are very connected with medical clinic software – they’re often provided by the same vendor, using the same patient data – they serve different functions at the medical facility.
To put it simply, EMR systems are used for clinical aspects of the practice, such as managing medical records. Medical clinic software, on the other hand, focuses on the administrative and day-to-day operations of the medical practice. Integrating the two systems can sometimes be challenging, as medical practices often require assistance by the vendors to ensure a smooth implementation of each system.
Therefore, solutions that combine EMR and medical clinic software solutions are growing in popularity. Many EMR vendors now incorporate medical clinic software features such as scheduling, medical billing, documentation and outreach, combined with traditional EMR features such as clinical documentation.
What are the Essential Features of Medical Clinic Software?
Medical clinic software need to have a wide range of features in order to satisfy the needs of today’s medical clinics. While there’s an abundance of software solutions available on the market, the provided functionality needs to match up well with the needs of the practice.
Carefully analyzing the core functions, as well consulting on the process of implementation, can help medical clinics make more informed decisions and reap the most benefits from these systems. But while the ultimate goal of any medical clinic software is to reduce the time spent filling out paperwork and increase the time of patient interactions, there are many features that come with the best systems on the market.
Here are just a few that should be included in any comprehensive medical clinic software:
With the technology available today, it’s inexcusable for medical practices to continue wasting time by making appointments manually over the phone or at the front desk. Modern medical clinic software allow you to completely automate appointment scheduling tasks, making them as simple as pressing a few buttons.
Instead of having to rely on spreadsheets or paper records, medical clinics can have an all-in-one solution for all appointments with medical clinic software. It can log new patient appointments according to the schedules of each doctor, maintain a history of all past appointments and send automated appointment reminders with follow-ups to patients, providing the option of canceling the appointment online.
This not only saves a lot of time, but can also significantly reduce expenses. According to one estimate, missed appointments end up costing a staggering $150 billion to the U.S. healthcare system. With the help of medical clinic software, missed appointments can be reduced to a minimum.
Medical clinic software allows practices to efficiently handle all of their billing tasks in-house instead of having to outsource them. The system can quickly submit claims to payers, respond to rejections, collect and analyze data that helps evaluate fiscal numbers and generate comprehensive reports.
A certified medical coder is still required on staff in order to bill through the medical clinic software and comply with the numerous regulations. But it’s a far cheaper expense than completely outsourcing the billing process.
The leading medical clinic software have comprehensive reporting functionality. Users can use premade reports or create their own, compiling administrative data and patient information into convenient, easy-to-read reports.
The ease and simplicity of quickly generating and storing reports in one place makes it easy to ensure good communication between the clinic, its patients and insurance companies.
Insurance claims can be a very time-consuming task for medical administrators, and medical clinic software makes the entire process much simpler. The system can help make the entire process run almost completely autonomously, freeing up a lot of time for other tasks such as properly answering patient questions or dealing with other administrative issues.
Inventory management in medical clinics can be a complicated process. Making sure that numerous supplies, such as durable medical equipment (DME) or pharmaceutical samples are in stock and conveniently stored can be a challenge. Medical clinic software can streamline the process by providing an efficient way to track inventory orders, manage inventory storage and generate comprehensive reports – all without the need for manual data entry.
With the easy-to-use barcode scanning equipment, clinics can significantly reduce the time required for daily tasks, as well as the number of people required for inventory management.
The cost containment features of the software allow tracking inventory from the purchase order to the delivery to the patient, which provides valuable data, helping make more accurate cost-per-patient predictions.