Medical Practice Management Software Buyer's Guide
Introduction to medical practice management software
Table of Contents
Patient care is the face of healthcare that most people see. How a patient is treated can form the foundation of a critical doctor-patient relationship to detect serious health issues early on. But beyond "customer service" orientation in the healthcare industry, tactical organization and detailed record-keeping are needed to support the business side of a medical practice.
That's right - we're talking about medical practice management.
Software that helps medical practices manage their offices has been around for decades. Today’s medical practice management (MPM) software has embraced technological innovations that leave its older counterparts in the dust. Modern medical software allows staffers to track patient demographics, visits, and diagnoses; collect, transmit, and track billing information and insurance payments; manage appointment scheduling; and generate a variety of reports.
Some of the newer MPM software packages on the market have embraced healthcare management "in the cloud." Internet-based cloud software offers an even wider array of practice management features at a lower cost than many integrated software packages. Cloud features include drag-and-drop appointment scheduling from an Internet browser, sophisticated claim submittal with higher first pass resolution rates, software automated high-speed collections, and budget forecasting analytics with user-friendly reporting tools.
By taking on such an assortment of tasks, MPM software is able to improve the efficiency of an entire practice: from physicians and nurses to clerks and billing specialists. Your choice of software will affect everyone in your office.
Medical practice management affects not only your office but also your patients. The much-maligned Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), which among other things set standards for electronic patient data, is a driving force behind many MPM decisions.
As HIPAA gains regulatory power, institutes new rules, and levies heftier fines for non-compliance, medical practices need to be sure their MPM software provides the highest level of security. For this reason, some software vendors now encourage the use of a HIPAA compliant hosting provider to offer built-in physical, technical, and administrative safeguards per the US Department of Health and Human Services standards.
With all of these features in mind, there are hundreds of MPM software packages available to target every type and size of practice. This Buyer's Guide will help you ask the right questions to evaluate both the software and the vendor so you can choose the best solution for your practice.