Why I’m Writing This
Every doctor should be using an EMR. In fact, I think it should be required by the government just like in some other countries. I also think it should be at least introduced in medical school.
I know: coming from me, it sounds biased. But hear me out first.
I’ve seen EMR systems in action internationally, from the US, to Japan, to Singapore, heck, even to a public hospital in China where a foreigner like me got hospitalized.
I’ve also seen SeriousMD being used by Filipino doctors first-hand all over the Philippines. I saw how they could easily retrieve information and refer patients. I’ve seen how it affected the doctors, their staff and patients… positively, I might add.
But who am I anyway? I’m not a doctor, so you might prefer to hear it from your fellow doctors.
If that’s the case, it just so happens I recently got this heart-warming message from a doctor and I cannot thank her enough for it. (I’ll keep the name anonymous but you might want to join the private group to see her there.)
That statement led me to writing this article because even to this day, I still get asked “Why do I need an EMR?”
The short answer? To become a better healthcare provider. The long answer? That’s where the rest of this article comes in.
Sure, I’ve heard of the negative stuff (“Slows me down” or “It’s confusing”) and I’ve seen some sad scenarios of doctors being forced to use a hideous system by the hospital they are affiliated with.
For the record, many groups/companies invest in “EMR” systems that are not really built with the doctors’ use in mind, but more for the back-end people (billing and room management, like a system for hotels) so I understand why that leaves a bad taste in the mouths of doctors.
But not all EMRs are like that.
With that said, I think it’s time to show you what you really came here for.
25 Reasons Why You Need to Use an EMR
For obvious reasons, I’ll refer to our own EMR software here (it’s the one I know best, after all!). All of the following things can be done inside SeriousMD. Besides having an EMR / EHR at it’s core, it’s actually a complete practice management system.
1. Instant Data Retrieval
EMRs let you find the data you need in literal seconds. There’s no more waiting around for your secretary to dig through mounds of paper files: instead, either of you can just type the name of a patient and retrieve his/her info instantly.
2. Manage Your Personal Schedule and Work Calendar
A good EHR offers time management tools. More efficient time management at the clinic means more time saved for yourself and even more time for your family.
3. Take and Save Pictures
Admit it, you’ve encountered a time in your practice when you just wanted to take a picture and include it with the patient’s files but couldn’t. With this, you can take photos, import your scanned images, pre-save them and even draw on top of it!
4. Organize Your Files
The beauty of going digital is that the computer can do most of the organization for you. An EHR will sort files logically as well as automatically at the click of a button. It can also organize them by date or let you them filter just to see all your created prescriptions and more. It’s actually one of the ways EHRs seriously trump paper records.
5. Send Messages to the Next Person in the Queue
Worried about no-shows? Have a long queue? Notify your patients via SMS when it’s almost their turn! Send your patients messages to remind them of their appointments! Lower no-show rates mean higher profits for you.
6. Refer Patients
Gone is all the old brouhaha involved with arranging a referral. With a single tap, you can refer patients to other doctors.
But wait! Is the doctor not yet on SeriousMD? Send the referral anyway! They’ll get a notification via SMS and/or email. All they have to do is login to SeriousMD to access it securely.
No more writing, no more creating really long letters over and over again, no more sending a text message to notify the other doctor. SeriousMD does it all automatically. Coordinated care at it’s best, and who doesn’t want that?
7. Consult with Other Doctors
With SeriousMD Messenger, you’re able to consult with other doctors privately or even send orders to residents. Unlike regular SMS or even using other messaging apps, SeriousMD Messenger is HIPAA-compliant and that keeps your patient data and communication safe.
8. View the Patient’s Historical Lab Results
If your practice relies on you looking at a lot of lab results, then SeriousMD is your best friend. You can check a patient’s past lab results with a single tap/click and easily view the rest by swiping.
9. Communicate with Patients
Establishing rapport with patients is important for your practice. An EHR with integrated communication features can help. Try using SeriousMD Messenger, for instance. Using a single interface, you can send and receive SMS and even get email replies. Everything in one place.
10. Track Vitals Over Time
One of our favourite things to talk about is our Vitals feature. It can adapt easily to your practice and it’ll show you the data in a graph that can be used as an initial way see if the patient is improving. You can even print out the data set if you want to.
11. Automatic Patient Reminders
SeriousMD lowers no-show rates by at least 30% with the help of SMS reminders. That means less rescheduling, better time management and better patient care.
But who says you only have to use integrated SMS for appointment reminders? You can also send patients reminders for various medical purposes, including to help them remember to monitor a condition or get a lab test done.
12. Overview Reports on How Your Practice Is Doing
You have access to a reports module to easily see stats about your practice. You also get automated weekly reports on how many patients you saw and how many to expect for next week. You also get a special, over-the-top year end report.
13. Instant Grouped Medicines for Prescriptions
Ever noticed that you keep writing the same drug prescriptions over and over? With SeriousMD, all it takes is 1 tap and it loads your pre-saved meds on it’s own. Imagine this, 1 tap to load the meds, 1 tap to print and then sign it. How hard is that?
14. Instant Lab Panels
Much like with Grouped Medicines above, you’ve probably grown tired of writing lab requests over and over again. Pre-save them, then load the panel with 1 tap when you need it. Print it out and sign it. That’s it!
15. Unique Reference Databases That Actually Help You
Ever found yourself looking at reference books or perhaps other apps? Well, now you can find all that info you’re looking for from a single interface. Inside SeriousMD, you have access to a Med database, ICD 10, PhilHealth rates, medicine database AND MORE.
Best of all, it shows up when you need it. It’s all part of a process inside SeriousMD.
16. Patient History View
See past procedures, medications, allergies, immunizations, family history and so on. Scroll through, learn about the patient in one look and make the right diagnosis.
17. Efficient and Happy Staff
EHRs can do a lot of the heavy lifting staff usually cover at your practice, including file search and organization as well as rote patient communication. That means your people are less harried as they go about their workday, having more tools to help them work efficiently and quickly. During a demo visit, I literally saw a secretary crying with the amount of folders and paper files that she could barely handle. Do you really want to make your secretary cry?
18. No More Boxes of Archived Files
Tired of trying to scrape up storage space for all those old patient files you have in cardboard boxes? Are you one of those doctors with boxes inside the room because you just didn’t have enough space? Found yourself archiving files for patients in less than 2 years now instead of your usual 5+ years? Transfer all that data to digital storage and you won’t have to worry about keeping (or losing) them.
19. See Patients in Any of Your Clinics
An online EMR lets you be plugged into all your data all the time, overcoming traditional physical limitations about where you can work. You can retrieve any patient’s information wherever you are thanks to secure cloud storage, which means patients can see you even in clinics other than their regular one. Heck, you can run your clinic even without being in your clinic.
20. Easy Data Access for the Covering Doctor
One of the toughest things for physicians is ensuring covering doctors know where and how to access their patients’ data. With an EMR, that won’t be a problem anymore.
21. Let’s You Move Around In Your Clinic
For many doctors, moving around the clinic is a huge part of their job. Being able to use a mobile EMR not only cuts down time for checking files, it also lets you input data right on the spot. Imagine yourself moving around, entering notes, impressing the patient by showing a great illustration and printing prescriptions wirelessly. Then by the time you get to your table, you can just sign the prescription and you’re done!
22. Be Flexible with Your Queue
SeriousMD was built for the Filipino doctor. That means the queue is super simple. For those who want specific time appointments though, then that’s also possible. It just works.
23. Completely Track and See if Your Practice is Growing
Through the billing module, you can easily keep track of your practice’s financials. You can create different reports, keep track of products you’ve sold, know how much cash on hand there should be at the end of the day and even export everything into a single report for your accountant.
24. Organized, Systematic Work Flow
Using an EMR will help you streamline your process in the clinic, which makes your whole process more efficient. If you have new staff, you can integrate them into the system really easily.
25. Track HMO’s
For many whom I’ve talked with, having an HMO pay them is practically considered a bonus because keeping track was such a pain. Now you can actually keep track of it and get paid what’s really owed to you.
But wait, there’s even more…
26. Free Online Visibility
Getting put in our registry of doctors/clinics practically means free publicity for your practice. You become discoverable to new patients searching for doctors with your expertise in their area… without having to pay for it.
27. Automatic Calculations
Depending on your specialty, you might sometimes find yourself calculating certain dates or using certain apps to do the calculation for you. With SeriousMD, we have those built-in. Need WHO growth charts? It’s also in there and automatically shows you the result right after you enter the information.
28. Daily Overview
Have a full view of your day. See how many patients you have scheduled for the day and you’ll see it update throughout the day as you head over to the next location. You can also have SeriousMD send you an SMS to let you know how many patients you have waiting before you even reach the location.
29. Custom Recurring Reminders
Do you have patients who need to be reminded of something regularly, like taking their medication or coming in for an important monthly checkup? Set up reminders for them using integrated SMS and Emails.
30. Lets You Work Even in Small Spaces or Clinics
EMRs can replace nearly all of your old paper documents, which means lower storage space requirements for your office. As a result, even smaller spaces become feasible locations for your practice. Some clinics will have small tables or work areas, too. With a portable device, you can practically do everything already while enabling you to move around.
I could go on and on, but you probably stopped reading halfway and didn’t see the extra ones I listed.
I was tempted to put “31. Lots of Extra Space for Potted Plants and Decors” because that’s literally what one of the doctors in Bulacan told me that she loved because her file cabinets were gone now, but I opted not to, to keep this article serious. No pun.
Already Using an EMR System?
Many are still using private clinic software systems that are outdated and shouldn’t really exist anymore in this day and age. These legacy systems put your data at risk, their use hurts efficiency, and they’re really ugly to look at.
Trust me, I’ve seen all of them.
I’ve even seen clinics using Microsoft Word, which is the most insecure thing you can use to keep the “private data” of your patients. I was also in a clinic where the software was fake and the patient files were already infected with malware. It’s really not worth risking patient data.
If you want to talk to us about your system and how to switch over to SeriousMD, there’s a chat bubble at the bottom right of the screen. Click that and talk to us. We won’t be able to help you if you don’t let us know.
Get Started TODAY
It’s almost a new year and there’s no better time to get started.
If you have been signed up to SeriousMD for a while now but you still haven’t started to use it, it’s about time that you do.
If you haven’t signed up yet, click here to sign up.
Just take SeriousMD to the clinic, use it for 3 straight days and see the benefits. It doesn’t cost you anything to give it a try.
2018 is right around the corner, commit to taking that first step and be ready for the new year. We’re here to make it easier for you.