Choosing the Wrong EHR is a Risk for Implementation
A large part of successfully implementing any EHR system for your practice is understanding exactly what your practice needs are.
Choosing an EHR system is incredibly complex and often unique to your practice’s specialty, size, goals, workflows and preferences. Plus, once you choose it, the system must be properly deployed and used in day-to-day office workflows. It is so important to pick the right software for your practice out of the wide variety of EHRs on the market today because that choice is the foundation for long-term success in your office.
Do your due diligence
Evaluate your needs, research different software, and take your time through the various stages of the decision-making process. If you rush the analysis process, you risk costing your practice money in the form of productivity loss, and frustration when the system is a poor fit.
When you analyze your current system and workflows, create a punch list of items that are important to your practice. This step will allow you to narrow down your selection of EHR candidates to ones that only fit your criteria. Often, skipping this step can create an unforeseen issue, and you will end up with an EHR that does not work well for your practice in the long term. Also, be sure to not get swept away in the sales pitch! The best option for your practice may not be the first EHR you see.Functionality and fit are key – it is okay to wait and compare multiple options to find the best one. You need to take the initiative to ask the hard questions and dig deep to see if the EHR will work for you and your list of goals.
Be sure to manage your expectations throughout the process. When done right, finding your EHR may take more time than you realize which can cause some frustration.
You also need to fully understand how you can properly use the EHR you select for your practice. Some vendors may overpromise, when (in reality) your practice must properly implement, demographically fit, and use their system per “best practice” whether that is attainable for you or not. Do not expect your office to become a well-oiled, efficient machine overnight just because you got a new and improved EHR. Also, try to remember that EHRs are still relatively new technologies for the healthcare world, thus there are some wrinkles that need to be ironed out.
The vendor itself should be carefully considered in parallel to the actual EHR product. If the vendor is hard to reach, does not answer your questions fully, or has bad reviews, you may want to reconsider engaging them as your EHR provider. You will inevitably be working very closely with your vendor’s customer service staff through implementation and beyond so make sure you are comfortable with them as a partner.
Ultimately, choosing the wrong EHR system can be a nightmare for use and implementation in your practice, but there is no need to worry. With the right tools and above knowledge, your practice will be up and running on a new system in no time.
Be sure to stay tuned for the companion blog on EHR implementation and follow us on social media to stay up-to-date on the latest healthcare and practice management information. For an in-depth dive into all things EHR implementation, be sure to download our free guide.