EHRs qualify for a full review if they:
- Offer or make available a trial or demo account
- Answer questions about their product and related topics (security, HIPAA)
- Are focused on the needs of therapist in private practice
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PIMSY – Review
Pros: Full Featured, Solid Support, Well Established, Flexible Pricing, Full Electronic Claim Integration, HR Functionality, Meaningful Use Certified
Cons: Steep Learning Curve, Challenging to Use Via Mobile Devices (but improving!)
Standout Features: HR Functionality and Customizability
It’s a Good Choice For Practices That: Are larger group practices, particularly if they have a prescribing clinician in the group or want the extensive feature set and level of customization available. (especially if they need to meet Meaningful Use and/or HIE requirements)
PIMSY (Provider Information Management Systems) is a rare breed. There are plenty of examples of “medical-centric” EHRs that later adapted themselves to be used by behavioral health practices and agencies. PIMSY is rare in that it is a Meaningful Use Certified EHR that was developed specifically for mental health professionals from the start. Because of this, it is missing many of the distracting features and work flows found in some of those “converted” systems. Further, PIMSY can be much more than just an EHR. Depending on the package purchased, PIMSY can function as a truly complete practice management system, especially for larger practices that need to track employees and/or contractors.
Some of these practice management features you’ll find in PIMSY and very few other cloud-based programs include extensive organizational and human resources functions like:
- Organizational tracking (create not just locations, but Divisions as well as storage of business paperwork)
- Continuing Education tracking
- HR paperwork storage/tracking
- Payroll (including the ability to handle different reimbursement arrangements)
- Licensure Renewal tracking
It’s features like these that set PIMSY apart as a complete solution for sizable group practices and agencies.
As an EHR, PIMSY is feature rich. From customizable and integrated treatment plans and progress notes to expansive reporting features, PIMSY has all of the most sought after “standard features” covered. In addition, PIMSY has implemented an initial client portal that allows clients to enter and update their demographic and insurance information, as well as upload documents. They report this will be expanded to include more features sometime in 2014. PIMSY also provides the much sought after integrated ERAs (Electronic Remittance Advice) which is a significant time saver. In the end, PIMSY is so expansive, it would be impossible to list all of the features and detail included in the program. I strongly recommend viewing a demo of PIMSY before attempting to dive in yourself.
Just a sampling of their features launched in 2016-2017 include:
- PIMSY now offers 6-8 new templated consent forms that integrate with our signature pad. This allows clients to view and sign consent, release, and other forms without using paper.
- The PIMSY calendar can now send meeting invitations to providers. PIMSY can now send an invite to that therapist’s Outook, Yahoo, Gmail, etc, account, allowing them the ability to sync their personal calendar with PIMSY’s and keep better track of their scheduled appointments.
- Auto-adding renewals is now available for clients and users: for example, if you’re setting a renewal reminder for a consent form that has to be updated annually, you can set a renewal reminder for a new form to get it back within 2 weeks, and PIMSY will also automatically set a 2nd one for a year out, to make sure you’re getting all of the needed forms on file in time.
In 2018 PIMSY added:
- Direct scan or drag and drop of documents into client area
- Bed and room management (built for inpatient facilities but usable by others!)
- e-prescribe and a Medication Administration Record
- A simplified Provider Portal for practices that want to provide a more simple, user-friendly interface for their clinicians
- iPhone and Android apps (useful for small practices that use a third party for billing)
- Friendlier Apple/Mac pricing
Another plus in PIMSY’s corner is that it is scalable. Offering four different versions, or pricing levels, it’s possible to start with a smaller, more affordable subset of PIMSY’s features and add more as your business grows. Despite this scalability, it’s unlikely that PIMSY will be cost effective for most solo practitioners, especially those who are part-time. Those looking to eventually grow a larger practice, however, might want to consider investing early in an application like PIMSY that can help them manage such growth.
None of my reviews are complete without pointing out some room for improvement. Since this is such a new, and quickly growing market, no application is without its challenges. One of PIMSY’s most significant challenges is the learning curve. They have packed so many features and details in, it can take some time to learn where everything is located. This is somewhat exacerbated by the “old school” windows style interface.
There are only a handful of more minor issues or oversights within PIMSY. One significant one being that their “automatic appointment reminders” are not fully automatic; they have to be manually triggered. Once you’ve set up a template, it’s fairly easy to go in on a regular basis and send multiple reminders at once, but it still requires that manual intervention. PIMSY is also lacking full credit card integration, though they report that is coming very soon.
In the end, businesses that are large enough to employ an administrative assistant can hand that task to them. They will also see a significant return on their investment in the learning curve of the program. Those practices that employ Psychiatrists and/or Nurse Practitioners who prescribe medication are also strongly encouraged to consider PIMSY because of it’s prescribing features as well as its Meaningful Use certification.
I recommend that anyone that has or is looking to grow a large practice and has a need for a lot of customization and/or prescribing clinicians give PIMSY a look.
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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.