An electronic medical record (EMR) implementation isn’t just about replacing paper charts with digital technology. EMRs also provide a perfect opportunity to review and improve your workflows. The result can be increased efficiencies—which means decreased costs.
Your medical practice has probably been doing things the same way for a long time. Maybe you think you do things well, and most likely you actually do. Most practices, however, have not recently reviewed and optimized processes to the extent possible. Few have standardized procedures in writing, for example.
Implementing an EMR won’t automatically make these improvements. In fact, most people think EMRs solve problems, but they actually amplify problems that already exist in a practice.
Because of this, adopting an EMR presents a good opportunity for you to make your practice more efficient by reviewing processes and optimizing your own workflows. In fact, you may find that with little effort you are able to identify new efficiencies that could save time and money.
Be patient, however. The adoption of technology is an iterative process. In other words, while EMRs are full of functions that will bring efficiency to your practice if implemented correctly, this won’t happen overnight. Give it some time. Typically, health care groups are in the learning and adoption phase of their transition for several months. You should see results after that.