Choosing the right Electronic Health Record (EHR) system is no easy feat. There are many different platforms available; from bare-bones record-keeping software to a full suite of features designed not only to keep records but assist you in all the daily tasks of running and growing your own business. So what should you consider when looking for an EHR that’s right for your practice?
What is an EHR?
Traditionally, EHRs (also known as EMRs — Electronic Medical Records) are used in clinical settings for facilitating charting, diagnosing, and billing. Modern EHRs, like Practice Better, offer additional features that assist practitioners who work with clients in an ongoing capacity, such as through coaching and workshops. They are two-way systems that can be viewed by both client and practitioner with each plugging into different tools on each side. These features facilitate a health-building vs disease-treating approach to working with clients. We like to think of these as an EHR plus! They include all of your standard EHR functions but can also provide seamless administrative software designed for solo practitioners. These features can include invoicing, scheduling, creating Superbills, robust form building options, workflow automation and much more.
Why is it important?
Every successful business needs successful tools and systems. This is especially true for coaches and practitioners working in private practice; you’ll want to make sure you’re automating as much as possible and cut down on the number of redundant tasks and workflows. But modern “EHRs” do more than just organize your client files. They can also provide structure and tools for your clients or patients to help them stay engaged, supported and committed to their health journeys.
How do you choose the right one?
There is no shortcut to assessing EHR systems. You can start with some common, preliminary questions but you’ll also want to really think about how you plan to work with clients and what functionality you’ll need to support that workflow.
Here are some preliminary assessment questions to ask yourself:
- Does it meet my needs now? Can I grow into the EHR as my business grows and evolves?
- How much does it cost? Can I afford this now?
- Is there support when transitioning from my current system?
- Is it user-friendly for me and for my clients?
- Is it secure (HIPAA, PIPEDA, GDPR compliant)?
While you’re considering these answers, keep in mind what your must-have functions are. What do you need in your EHR to make your practice run smoother and more efficiently?
Is it important for your clients to be able to onboard themselves? If so, you’ll need to look for an EHR that has an intuitive client interface. Try signing up as a client yourself. Is the portal easy to navigate? Is it straightforward to schedule appointments or log in to messaging features? You may also want to consider an EHR with the following features:
- Robust form builder
- Automated reminders
- Mobile apps
Are you hoping to work with more clients remotely? These features should be at the top of your list:
- Telehealth capabilities
- Online payment processing
- Secure chat functions
- Client accountability tools
- Document sharing
What if you’re more keen on working with groups? Look for systems with:
- Online programs
- Group scheduling
- Group communication
- Group engagement
- Community support
- Group call, chat, or video capabilities
The key to any successful business is finding the best application that sets you and your clients up for success. Think about your business not just as it is now but also what you envision for it in the future. For example, you may not do virtual or group sessions now but are those options you’d like to roll out to clients in the future? Do your research and choose a system that supports these goals.
Practice Better conveniently offers both EHR and Practice Management functionalities from one secure location. This comprehensive and versatile platform is preferred by thousands of health and wellness practitioners and coaches worldwide. Learn more about our comprehensive features and sign up for a free account to start discovering how you can practice better too.
Practice Better is the complete practice management platform for nutritionists, dietitians and wellness professionals. Sign up for free today.