You’re a smart business owner—and as all smart business owners do, you’re weighing the pros and cons of adopting a physical therapy EMR for your practice. Let’s take a look at your lists. I bet by now you’ve got a whole score of pros built up—like how EMR saves time and money, ensures Medicare compliance, integrates your documentation with your scheduling and billing so you can maximize patient visits and get paid, and so on. But maybe in the course of your pro-con list-making, you stumbled across a potential con: the challenge of transitioning to an EMR—the “EMR learning curve,” if you will. And that’s a real thing—a real thing that could be absolutely detrimental to your clinic’s productivity. But only if you choose the wrong EMR. So how do you choose the right one and ensure that your clinic has a smooth transition? It’s simple, really. Look for one that offers these five things:

  1. A complimentary online demonstration in which your entire team can participate

    Let’s face it: one of the keys to ensuring a smooth transition to EMR is having everyone on board with the decision. After all, change can be scary. So what’s the best way to get buy-in? Give your team a chance to tour the system, ask questions, and voice objections. An online demo is the perfect opportunity to accomplish this. That way, someone who knows the ins and outs of the EMR will be able to provide you all with the answers you’re looking for—and demonstrate the system’s worth right off the bat.

  2. The best darn training program either side of the Mississippi

    An online demonstration is awesome, but an EMR can seem like a totally different beast when it’s your turn to take the reins. So make sure there’s a sizable training step in between. Look for an EMR that provides full training to the whole team so that you all feel completely comfortable navigating the system from the minute you get your login credentials. Just make sure that “full training” doesn’t mean weeklong training. That’s only going to interrupt your treatment schedule, bringing down your productivity and your bottom line. Instead, look for an EMR that offers a complete training session in one to two hours and includes time for you and your staff to practice.

  3. Free, unlimited, lifetime support as well as handy-dandy user guides and how-to videos

    You should never have to pay to ask questions—ever. So look for an EMR that’s going to be there with answers, when you need them, in the format that you want them—for every question, every time. Even better, look for an EMR that values your opinion enough to ask you how you think the application could be better.

  4. An EMR tailored to the needs of rehab therapists

    Having to create Band-Aid fixes and duct tape workarounds to make a non-therapy specific EMR work for your clinic can make the transition terrifying. Instead, choose an EMR that is tailored to your workflow, and the transition will feel that much more natural. Plus, with a rehab-therapy specific EMR, you’ll always have the features and tools that are relevant and timely for your practice—for example, integrated PQRS and functional limitation reporting functionality.

  5. No contracts—zip, zero, zilch

    Don’t get trapped in a long-term EMR contract with a company that forgets about you, because, well, you’re stuck with them. Instead, choose an EMR company that gives you the power to walk away and thus, works to win your business even after the sale is closed. This alone will ensure that you receive the best product, customer service, and resources. You can’t do better than that!

    Choose a system that provides you with everything on this list, and you’ll have a super smooth transition to EMR. Go ahead and add that to your list of pros right now.