Implementing an electronic health record software is a step that will be very advantageous for your practice. Patients and providers will quickly see the many benefits that come from having a more efficient, secure way to organize health records.
Ensure the smoothest implementation of your new EHR by following these 7 steps.
1. Create an EHR Team
Start off on the right foot by having a solid group of employees help launch the software. The team should include a diverse group, including an IT expert, lead physician, and office manager. Give each team member assignments for learning the system and helping with implementation. Assignments could include creating timelines, tracking progress, and troubleshooting.
2. Check Software Compliance
Most EHR software is already HIPPA-compliant, but you’ll want to double-check the security measures to make sure you aren’t making any violations. Work with an IT expert to conduct a HIPPA risk assessment before you move forward with implementation.
3. Source the Right Equipment
Implementing EHR software means you’ll probably need some new hardware, including computers, tablets, and printers. Figure out what equipment you need to optimize the use of your EHR. Install hardware in places that will increase efficiency and be easy for office staff and providers to access. For example, providers will need computers nearby when consulting with patients, and office managers will need printers close to their desk.
4. Transfer Records
With all of the hardware in place, it’s time to transfer patient records to the EHR. There are many options for migrating the data, so explore them before determining the best route for you. You can outsource the job or assign someone on your team to take on the task. Create a checklist of everything that needs to be transferred to the EHR to make the process go smoothly.
5. Design Efficient Processes
The more you use the EHR, the more efficient you’ll become with the software. However, it’s best to start out with some set processes to help with workflow while staff members are learning the system. Create steps for when things should be done and in what order. Consider the best person for the job. Make sure all workflows are absolutely necessary and add value to the patient experience. Busywork will only add stress to the team.
6. Offer a Training Program
Now it’s time to introduce the EHR to your entire staff. Choose a roll-out process that works best for your practice. You may want to slowly implement the EHR with a few employees at a time, or you may want to roll over to the EHR for the whole team all at once. Make sure all staff members have the proper resources for learning the system, and be patient as you work out the kinks.
7. Conduct Ongoing Assessments
Once you have everyone using the EHR, you’ll want to keep a close eye on how things are going. Conduct ongoing assessments to see how well staff members are adapting to the new system. Set goals and measure how well the EHR is helping you reach those goals.
Every practice will have a learning curve when implementing EHR software, but the payoff will be well worth the effort. With careful planning and continued evaluation, the EHR will help your practice be more secure, efficient, and accurate in delivering quality healthcare.