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Why and When to Replace Your EHR?
With over 50 percent of physicians actively using EHR systems, is it time to start thinking replacement? A 2013 Black Book poll shows that 81 percent of providers want to replace EHR platforms they find cumbersome and antiquated. Initial offerings in this technology were plagued with poor features and clunky interfaces, but current designs add functionality and upgraded enhancements like ePrescription.
The marketplace is full of bright, shiny replacement options, but the financial investment is costly. The capital expense for the initial system was high, how do you know when there are one or more significant reasons to contemplate paying for a replacement? Consider the following top nine signs which indicate that it is time for investing in new EHR software.
1. Your EHR Workflow is Inflexible
EHR workflow is a critical issue, one that many providers failed to consider when purchasing their initial system. Paper-based workflow was flexible. If something felt forced or out of sequence, the administrator made a quick change and the staff automatically adjusted.
EHR platforms take more work and impacts the efficiency adversely, especially when the workflow is off. When providers are unhappy with the ability of their EHR System to adapt to the workflow requirements of their clinic, it is time to look for an EHR replacement whose workflow is flexible and better suited to the needs of the practice.
2. Your EHR Is Unable To Grow With You
When the practice grows, the current EHR system may not be able to grow with it. Opening up new locations, taking on specialists or networking with a partner facility – these are all goals that improve the stability of the medical practice. It is critical to implement an EMR system that is able to expand as the practice does or to find a replacement that meets the challenge.
3. You Are Dissatisfied With Your EHR Vendor
An EHR system is only as good as the vendor that supports it. Poor customer service means the end users have to find ways to compensate. Physicians Practice calls this a common complaint for providers. EHR is a competitive industry. Instead of continuing to live with circumstances that create frustration instead of solutions, find an EHR vendor that puts the needs of their customers first.
4. Your EHR Does Not Meet Stage 2 Meaningful Use Criteria
Going into the second stage of meaningful use means new standards that your EHR Software must comply with in order to qualify for CMS payments and incentives. If the current software fails to advance the practice to Stage Two of Meaningful Use, find one that will. (RevenueXL EHR is an Stage 2 Meaningful Use compliant EHR.)
5. You Keep Getting New Bills For Hidden Expenses
Some companies lower the initial purchase cost of the program, but make up for it by layering hidden fees, especially for upgrades and every additional feature that you may require. If the vendor is introducing new fees to maintain the system or provide new features mandated by changing laws, it can cost you much more to continue using that software than to find a replacement. It is clearly time to dump your current EHR Vendor and find an replacement EHR.
6. Your EHR Software Is Stagnating
The vendor should consistently be improving upon the system. That means adding practical features and providing cost effective upgrades to improve functionality. If the EHR program stagnates, it might be necessary to replace it with a software package that offers more growth potential or makes the life of your staff easier and better.
7. Your EHR Does Not Provide Mobile Access
CIO points out that mobility is often a sticking point. Physicians use tablet computers and smartphones just like the rest of the world. Surveys show that providers want EHR systems that offer mobility options, so they can access patient data on the road. If the vendor fails to develop EHR software that leverages the power & convenience of hand-held technology with web enabled Smartphones, or to provide applications that fill that void, a replacement system is the solution.
8. You Face Technical Problems Consistently
Anything from difficulty integrating with Health Information Exchanges to inability to shift from ICD-9 to ICD-10, technical setbacks interfere with a smooth running office. When every other day brings a new technical challenge, find a replacement option that creates stability instead of chaos.
9. Improving Productivity Is A Dream
If the system is just taking up too much of the staff’s time, it creates an inefficient work environment. The purpose of an electronic records platform is to improve productivity, not hinder it. If the software is interfering with treating patients now, it will only get worse with the new health reforms. A replacement system is a practical choice.
EHR software should improve the care process, add data analytics options and enhance patient engagement. If that is not what your current system brings to the table, then it is time to consider replacement options.
RevenueXL provides Meaningful Use Stage 2 Certified EHR Software for small and mid-sized clinics which improves communication about patient data, securely stores it and uses the latest technology. Call us today to schedule a free EMR Demo or check out our free downloads.