Practice Management

Practice Management (145)

Making the Switch to EMRs

When it comes to Electronic Medical Records (EMRs), large medical groups have the resources and manpower to invest in information technology, and are able to benefit from cost savings, because they are often insurers as well as providers.

But these large groups are the exceptions rather than the rule in U.S. health care – three-fourths of the nation’s doctors practice in small offices with 10 doctors or fewer, for whom computerized patient records seem like an insurmountable cost and cumbersome implementation. Is it any surprise, then, that only about 17 percent of the nation’s physicians have made the leap to digitization?

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Wrapping Up 2009; Forward to 2010

No matter how you shine your crystal ball, The Obama Factor keeps showing up, whether it’s looking back to a tumultuous 2009 in healthcare, or ahead to a hopefully calmer 2010.

One of the most important happenings in health IT wasn’t a technological development but a legislative one: the federal HITECH act (Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health) enacted as a component of the Stimulus Act, created as an incentive for healthcare providers to acquire an electronic patient record. Read more...

From the Top - Claudia Tessier - mHealth Initiative

Claudia Tessier is one of the prime leaders in the mobile health field. She is founder and president of the not-for-profit membership organization, mHealth Initiative Inc. (mHI) and previously served as executive director of MoHCA, the Mobile Healthcare Alliance.

TPP: What is the current focus of your organization?
Tessier: mHealth Initiative is the leading organization promoting new communication patterns in healthcare through the use of mobile phones and other mobile devices (mDevices) in order to enhance efficiency and effectiveness of healthcare delivery. Our focus is on the ability of this mHealth phenomenon to enable participatory healthcare, which involves healthy people as well as patients, both wellness and care providers, payers, pharma, researchers and public health as active participants in a healthcare system that is open and transparent. 

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Study: ROI on Electronic Patient Records

The business value of information technology is a topic that is cause for a lot of discussion. What is the ROI (Return On Investment), for example, for adopting Electronic Medical Records (EMR)? There are skeptics and true believers. Read more...

Scanning - Paper to Bits

Given the pressures to convert from paper systems to EMRs, document scanners are quickly becoming the new indispensible item in the doctor’s office. “Inevitably, there is going to be paper or documentation that needs to be scanned and integrated into a patient record that includes registration, insurance, clinical notes, lab, radiology, prescription, referral notes, etc,” says Scott C. McCabe, chief operating officer at IMR. ‘The list of information that is not native to the EMR is endless.” Read more...

E-prescribing: "It's Good Medicine"

In Sept. 2009 alone, the FDA approved 126 prescription medications for the market, either as entirely new drugs or under new labels. Consider that this is only the latest round of approvals. Consider that there are literally thousands of medications that can be purchased at retail pharmacies in the U.S. Consider that there are thousands more than can be simply picked up in any grocery store "Personal Care" section. How can a doctor or a practice possibly keep track of all of the potential interactions (and allergies) for each patient, considering that patients may be taking a lengthy list of prescribed and over-the-counter drugs, while also possibly eating foods that have an impact on how medications work? Read more...

Health IT Legislation Impacts Small Physician Practices

meaningfuluseIt might be hard to believe, but according to experts, there are still some physicians who haven’t heard about the $19 billion dollar stimulus package meant to spur EMR adoption, bumping up the 18 percent adoption rate of today. Other doctors are skeptical about whether they will really ever see the stimulus money. Read more...

Cell Phones for Doctors

Doctors have been glued to cell phones since their inception. They are not, however, so bonded to their computers. Now that the two are converging, which handsets and which apps are the winners among the white-coats? In handsets, it’s a muddied draw. While many doctors are still carrying cell phones with only basic texting and email capabilities, the Blackberry and the iPhone are the top choices for doctors looking to maximize their profits and minimize their liabilities on the run.

 

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Just What Does Meaningful Use Mean?

Meaningful UseIf you’re a small physician practice struggling with implementing the bells and whistles – or is it wires and widgets – of electronic health records (EHR), take heart: last week, David Blumenthal, national Health IT coordinator, pledged to pay special attention to individual physicians and small group practices as the stimulus package takes effect. Although almost a quarter of physicians currently use EHRs, only 13 percent of small practices use the technology.
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Internet-Based Phone Systems for Doctors

VOIP phoneAmongst all the hubbub about new technologies in the doctor’s office lies the buzz about new Internet-based (IP) telephone systems for the doctor’s office. But is this another cash-hog technology or is it something that can really benefit doctors? To answer that question, first you need to know what it is, how it works and what that means to you and your practice.
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