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EHR – Practice Management System Features – Scheduling
This is the fifth article in my series on Cloud Based EHR / Practice Management Systems. For a more detailed discussion, as well as a five-stop process for selecting an EHR, check out the Guide to Choosing an EHR.
A private practice doesn’t exist without client appointments. Unless the practitioner or office manager is gifted with perfect memory, a tool for keeping track of those appointments is necessary. Until recent history, people have had little choice but to use paper calendars and day planners in order to schedule those appointments. Even in this age of computing, I’m aware of those in our field who still cling to paper. In fact, there are still advantages to an appointment book over a traditional software solution. You can have it with you wherever you are (portability). No need to be at your computer with the calendar software running (access). Cloud computing and mobile technology, however, hand you those conveniences on your laptop or tablet and throws in data backup and security (no worries about losing the appointment book). Now, opening your appointment book can be as easy as opening your mobile device.
Like Notes, appointment scheduling is a core feature in all of the Cloud-Based EHR / Practice Management Systems that I review. At it’s most basic, a scheduling module should allow users to create appointments including a date, time and client name or initials. The vast majority of systems will link client data to appointments, allow creation of other types of appointments (i.e. meetings, lunches, etc.), as well as display appointments in both a daily and weekly format. Further features like the ability to create recurring appointments, send appointment reminders to clients, and the ability for clients to see their schedule online are less universal.
Get the Complete Guide
Get fully informed and understand all of the implications of your EHR selection in the Guide to Choosing an EHR. In this book, Rob goes into detail and provides a step by step process for selecting the best fit EHR for your practice.
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Health Information Exchanges (HIE) are an initiative related to the Affordable Care Act and the HITECH Act. Their purpose is to ease the communication between the EHR/systems of various providers of health care, because the EHRs themselves are behind in doing so (i.e. interoperability).
About the Author
Rob has been covering technology and business news for mental health professionals since 2011. His extensive experience in IT, business, and private practice allow him to synthesize information in a friendly, digestible manner. He also enjoys time with his family, ultimate frisbee, and board gaming.