Electronic health record (EHR) systems are nearly universal in medical practices these days, with almost 90% of medical providers utilizing one. After all, EHR systems are essential for streamlining your overall operations and enabling you to dedicate more time to treating your orthopedic patients.
However, not all EHR systems are created equally. Some of them are more complicated than you need or simply don’t fit into your practice’s way of doing things; either way, when an EHR system is causing you and your colleagues more work instead of reducing your workload, it’s time to consider a change.
Why Patient Satisfaction Matters
It’s pretty simple: there’s no successful orthopedic practice without patients, both new and returning! Patient satisfaction is what drives your patients to return to your practice and thus maintains your revenue cycle. This is why it’s important to pay attention to the overall patient experience you provide, ranging from how easy it is for patients to schedule an appointment with your orthopedic practice to their impression of your waiting room or the development of a patient-provider relationship and more!
Considering the overall patient experience and seeing where you can boost patient satisfaction along the way is essential for your orthopedic practice to maintain success and continue to grow. An effective EHR system that centralizes communication and streamlines your overall operations is a valuable tool to ensuring patient satisfaction.
How to Improve Patient Satisfaction with an Orthopedic EHR
An effective orthopedic EHR system can greatly help your medical practice improve patient satisfaction in a number of ways, including:
Optimize Your Workflows
An orthopedic EHR boosts your productivity and efficiency by tremendously reducing the amount of paperwork you need to manage each day. This means you and your clinical staff have fewer forms to fill out by hand—which immediately puts more time into your day and optimizes your daily schedules.
Plus, referrals and prescriptions can be sent directly to other practices or pharmacies, which cuts back on wait times for patients. Effective orthopedic EHR systems also have the ability to send automatic reminders to patients regarding follow-up appointments.
All of these features, in addition to integrated patient tracking, billing, and timely insurance claim submissions, help to improve patient satisfaction while also putting more time and energy back into your day. With so much convenience inherent to an effective EHR system, your patients will appreciate the consideration you demonstrate for them and their time.
It’s a long-held stereotype that doctors and medical providers have poor penmanship; whether that resonates with your colleagues or not, the chance of errors or misinterpretation happening due to illegible handwriting is minimized with the incorporation of an effective orthopedic EHR system.
With digital notes and prescriptions, coding for procedures and general billing is easier since there’s no guesswork involved. Avoiding miscommunication is a surefire way to streamline your orthopedic practice and enhance the patient experience.
Ensure Patient Privacy
In a recent study, respondents ranked patient privacy and data security as more important than the cost of their care; in fact, 80% of those surveyed said this was their priority. As cyber-attacks and threats continue to evolve in frequency and sophistication, there is much cause for concern—especially since the healthcare industry is one of the most heavily targeted fields.
In November 2021 alone, more than 30 breaches of over 10,000 records were reported. With a fortified EHR system that is HIPAA compliant and implements best cybersecurity practices, your orthopedic practice demonstrates that it’s taking precautionary measures to ensure patient privacy is protected.
Securely Coordinate Patient Treatment with Other Providers
An orthopedic EHR system can help securely share patient information between authorized providers in order to coordinate care for a holistic treatment plan. This means that a patient’s history and needs are recognized ahead of time so that the information can be leveraged to develop an effective treatment plan between more than one provider.
Communication and collaboration between authorized providers is another priority for patients; in a survey from 2018, 66% of people responded that they wanted other healthcare providers to help coordinate their care.
Increased Practice Efficiency
With an effective orthopedic EHR system, your overall practice can accomplish more with less work. Digital records mean your staff won’t have to search through mountains of paper files or ask you to clarify handwriting on patient notes. EHR systems help enable automation to take over some of the tedious, repetitive tasks that often overwhelm staff and providers.
By having everyone at your orthopedic practice on the same page, you and your colleagues can maximize productivity without sacrificing accuracy. This puts more time back into your day to treat patients and reduces the amount of time spent after the practice closes following up on paperwork.
Improving Technology Adoption
When it comes to adopting any new technology, it’s helpful to know what to expect and how to use it. After all, the most helpful resource is useless if you don’t know how it works! Here are a few ways to improve technology adoption in your orthopedic practice:
- Understand where the points of improvement exist at your practice considering all perspectives such as the patient experience, the administrative side, the financial goals, and the provider’s work; evaluate how well the current methods for handling these pain points are and ask if there’s a better way
- Learn how medical technology can help address and alleviate these points of friction so that your whole practice is operating smoothly and more effectively; research demonstrations or free trials for different tools to see which one fits best in your orthopedic practice
- When researching potential technologies or systems to implement, be sure to see how much support the vendor will provide; this is a critical factor to consider when shopping around since you don’t want to encounter downtime or difficulties transitioning to the new tool
These three points will help improve technology adoption at your orthopedic practice in conjunction with clear communication and encouragement about how technology can greatly optimize your operations.
Why EHR Satisfaction in Your Clinic Matters
In addition to improving your orthopedic clinic’s overall technology adoption rate, it’s important to make sure that you’re using an EHR system that you and your staff are satisfied with. When users are satisfied with the tools they’re using, they’re more likely to eagerly engage with and maximize the value of those tools. This helps you maximize your clinic’s return on investment for your software expenses.
When your staff aren’t satisfied with the EHR your practice uses, they may go out of their way to avoid using it—leading to inconsistencies in your clinical workflows that increase the risk of human error and other problems. So, EHR satisfaction matters.
How can you tell if your staff are satisfied with the software your clinic uses? One way is to run an EHR satisfaction survey. Such a survey doesn’t have to be complicated, either. You could simply email staff a survey asking them to rate the software on a scale of 1-5 or 1-10 and ask them for comments on major issues they’ve experienced or improvements they would like to see.
This can give you a solid idea of how happy your staff are with the software and if there are any glaring issues that need to be addressed. Also, if there’s a feature that they all want to see that actually is part of the software but nobody knows how to use it, that could be a sign that you need to conduct some EHR training. This can help your staff make better use of your software.
Phoenix Ortho Is Here to Help!
Patient satisfaction is crucial for the overall success and longevity of your orthopedic practice. The experts at Phoenix Ortho know exactly how to help you and your team streamline your practice’s tasks while elevating the overall patient experience at your practice.
Reach out to the Phoenix Ortho team today for advice and information about how you can improve patient satisfaction and quality of care with orthopedic-specific EHR software.