So, you’ve been bitten by the EMR bug. We don’t blame you. There are so many ways an EMR will make your work life easier; it’s a wonder it didn’t happen sooner. If you’re not the decision-maker (read: money-spender) in your clinic, though, you might have some convincing to do. But tell your boss the things he or she wants to hear about EMR—all true, of course—and you’ll be well on your way to ditching the pen and paper in favor of some sweet, time-saving technology.
1. It solves a specific problem.
You and I both know that the right EMR (cough, WebPT) has a plethora of amazing benefits—everything from intuitive initial evaluations specifically designed to meet the needs of rehab therapists to seamlessly integrated Medicare compliance alerts, reporting, and tracking. But no one wants to hear them all in one sitting. Unless, of course, they’re having trouble sleeping. Instead, identify your boss’s pain points and tailor your pitch to address those specific issues.
For example, perhaps your boss is concerned that missed appointments are negatively impacting your clinic’s bottom line, but your front office staff just doesn’t have the time or the manpower to call every patient and confirm every appointment. You could point out that an EMR offers automatic appointment reminders (via phone, email, or text), which reduce no-shows and cancellations by as much as 30%. Or maybe your clinic director feels like the practice is missing out on valuable referral opportunities but he or she is maxed out on networking. You could mention the built-in referral tracking report, which provides intel your boss can use to network more effectively by targeting providers who need the most extra attention.
Whatever the case may be, you’ll be presenting a real solution to a real problem (or several) instead of just an amorphous, disconnected—albeit well-intentioned—idea. This is sure to get you some serious buy-in.
2. It’s a leg-up on the competition.
According to Xerox Healthcare, 80% of primary physicians in the US are using an EMR. And although physical, occupational, and speech therapists aren’t required to make the transition in order to receive Medicare reimbursements, anyone who interacts with doctors or hospitals should be on the same page with them, documentation-wise. It demonstrates a level of professionalism that, according to the American Physical Therapy Association (APTA), referring physicians are coming to expect. And they’re not the only ones. Accenture recently reported that 41% of consumers are willing to switch doctors to gain online access to EMR. For more on why scribbled notes (handwritten documentation) just aren’t going to cut it anymore, check out Heidi Jannenga’s Physiospot article here.
3. It’s worth it.
We’ve all heard a horror story or two about a practice spending tens of thousands of dollars to implement an electronic medical record only to discover that it actually doesn’t meet their needs; and by that point, there’s nothing they can do to fix it. But that doesn’t have to be your experience. In fact, it won’t be—as long as you do your due diligence and choose a cloud-based, therapy-centric EMR (specifically, one with no contracts, no upfront capital investments, and no long-term service or maintenance expenses). Adopting an EMR doesn’t have to be as difficult as some people—or some vendors—make it out to be. In fact, the decision should be easy because the right EMR will pay for itself several times over.
What do you think your boss wants to know about EMR? Tell us in the comments section. We’d be happy to help you develop a custom pitch sure to knock his or her socks off—for which you’ll get all the credit.