I have been in the healthcare space long enough to have a high level view of the complexities involved in doctoring and providing a high quality of patient care. Being a doctor requires the greatest level of commitment and diligence and the last thing we want is for our doctors to be distracted with none core, mundane functions, like choosing servers or types of networks needed to run your practice software. However, hiring your staff is not one of those functions and I recommend you get passionate about this task.
The advent of the Dictaphone at the turn of the 20th century was a huge step forward in technology – everyone from journalists to doctors benefited from this incredible device that could record conversations, to be later transcribed to print. Particularly in the medical industry, the creation of audio recording devices suddenly made it possible for physicians to outsource their transcribing work, thus beginning the profession of healthcare documentation as we currently know it.
Fast forward to 2015, and, like so many technological advances, it can now be replicated on a smartphone. Our devices are smaller, faster, simpler and more accurate, however there still lies that dreaded, time-consuming step – physically transcribing the spoken word to the written word. Surely, over a century after its original incarnation, we can do better than that.
Imagine filling out personal details on your mobile phone on the way to the doctor. Imagine any doctor then already knowing your patient history and being able to send you results on the go.
A study recently published in Medical Observer found that on the whole, both doctors and patients are underwhelmed with the national My Health Record (MyHR) service so far. The article notes that many doctors aren’t impressed with the display and ease-of-use, while a level of uncertainty stems from not fully understanding how the system works. The concept of MyHR is great and a step in the right direction in today’s digitally connected world, but as the study suggests, there is certainly room for improvement. This is particularly the case given the study also found that the majority of users are actually patients, not doctors.
How many minutes a day would you as a Healthcare Professional, spend on simple administrative tasks? How many hours per week? Per month? It’s frightening to extrapolate and realise just how many hours of your billable time is spent on simple but essential tasks like data entry. Additional to your time, it’s likely that your practice would employ a number of support staff whose primary roles are administrative jobs like filling in forms and filing paperwork. That’s a lot of man-hours adding up to a huge financial cost to your practice - and an inefficient use of your time.
Financials aside, a great electronic medical records system must free up some of your time to practice as a Healthcare Professional, and not as an administrative clerk.
Opening your own medical practice is a rewarding endeavour. As a new business owner, you'll need to establish efficient processes and smart finances. This practical guide aims to streamline your operations and simplify your finances, from day one.