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4 Clear Advantages of Having an Online Patient Portal

undefinedAn online patient portal is a Web-based access point that seamlessly connects doctors and patients like never before. This online tool gives ODs the ability to communicate and share health information remotely; all while supplementing the ongoing management of patient care. The online relationship can’t replace the valuable experience of an in-office visit, but it helps facilitate an ongoing doctor-patient dialogue. As part of the Meaningful Use Stage 2 requirements, eligible professionals are requires to provide patients with an electronic copy of their health information upon request. But Meaningful Use isn't the only reason you should be taking advantage of a patient portal.

In order to supplement the patient experience, and provide the best care available, your practice should adopt optometric software equipped with a compatible patient portal. Doing this, and understanding these 4 main advantages to the patient portal will help your practice recognize and appreciate how a patient portal can give you a competitive edge in the optical industry.

How an Online Patient Portal will Increase Your Competitive Edge

Patient-Doctor Communication

A patient portal should facilitate and function as a mediator of information between patient and doctor. You should be able to personalize secure messages that can be quickly exchanged, and used to create a more tailored experience for each of your patients. Adopting a patient portal will increase the value of each in-office visit, and help save you time by staying off the phone with patients who have questions after their visit! Also, by staying in touch online, your customer retention and satisfaction rates are likely to increase, along with your practice’s revenue. Implementing a tool, such as patient portal, to create a noticeably higher level of care and attention will build more widespread and meaningful relationships with your patients that you might have thought not possible in the past.

3 Daily Hassles Your EHR Software is Causing Your Practice

As an OD you're busy throughout your day taking care of patients as they come in and out of the exam room. Because your day is busy, you might not know where your staff is struggling to get through simple daily tasks. And, if your staff is annoyed or stressed out each day, it's going to end up rubbing off on their attitude with patients, and that's the last thing that you want.

Your practice management and EHR software can play a huge role in the success of your staff and your practice as a whole. We've got a list of software qualities that might be causing your staff added stress. If your team is facing any of these issues it might be time for you to look for a new system in 2015!

Is Your Staff Sick and Tired of Your EHR Software?

Plain and simple, the system is outdatedundefined

Some practices have been using the same software systems for years and years. The software has probably been doing it's job enough that you'd rather stick with it than take the time to search for and learn and new system. But in reality, a new up-to-date software is going to save your practice so much time in the long run. While it might be a tricky transition, it will be worth it in the end!

Does it take a million clicks in the software to get to where you need to be in the system? Are you having to switch between multiple tools in order to do your job? You might even be using an outdated version of the system that isn't giving you all the functionality that you need. The latest and most advanced systems out there today are cloud-based systems. You get automatic updates to your system without having to buy and install the latest versions. And, you'll get access to your system when you're out of the office since you will log into your system through a website online!

4 Things You Might Have to do to Keep Your Optometry EHR Protected

Your patients want to make sure that their health information is secure in your office, so being able to keep patient data secure is a big concern across all healthcare specialties. Whether you're using an optometry EHR software that is in the cloud, or on a client-server in your office there are different things that you need to be doing to help keep your patients' information protected.

With cloud-based systems the software vendor handles most of the security for you. Since you still log into your system with a username and password, part of that responsibility falls on you to maintain secure access and strong passwords to restrict entry to the system. But with client-server systems there is a lost more security that you need to maintain in your practice to help keep that information secure.

Tips for Maintaining Security of Your Client-Server Optometry EHR Software

undefinedPhysically Secure Your Office

This may seem obvious, of course you're going to secure your practice. But where exactly do you keep your server? Do you keep the room locked? Who has access to it? While it's unlikely that someone would intentionally be looking to take data from your servers, it's in your best interest to monitor the access to your server room. Do you manage the temperature controls where your server is stored to reduce the risk of overheating? Is your data backed up somewhere outside of your office in the event of a natural disaster or fire?

Don't Forget Anti-Virus Software

You went to school to be an Optometrist, not an IT consultant. So you might not be sure of all the options available for keeping your computers and data safe. Anti-virus software monitors your computer for viruses in emails and downloads, and prevents anything from infecting your computer or other computers on your network. Regardless of the solution you're using, anti-virus software is a good idea. New anti-virus software is constantly available for updates since new types of viruses are created and found everyday. So make sure that you're keeping yours up to date!

Fueling Your Practice with Cloud-Based EHR Software

Businesses run as well-oiled machines. And in an eyecare practice, you run all of your daily tasks through your practice management and EHR software, unless you're still a paper practice. So, hopefully the software that you're using is helping to fuel your practice to run as smoothly and efficiently as possible.

Maybe you've noticed a slow-down in your workflow, or your staff is complaining about bottlenecks and you're wondering if there is another software out there that could help fuel your practice for a re-charge. Cloud-based EHR solutions offer a few things that traditional, legacy software doesn't, and maybe it's just what your practice has been looking for.

How to Re-Charge Your Practice with a Cloud-Based EHR

24/7 Access to Your Systemundefined

With a client-server software, you've been stuck to only accessing your data from within the walls of your practice, and only on devices that have the software installed on them (unless you invested in a pricey solution where you can remotely access your system). But, with a cloud-based solution you don't have to install the system on any device. You simply log in by visiting a URL, which means you can access your system and data from outside of the office on any device, including tablets, with an Internet connection. In today's fast-paced, mobile world anytime access to your data is increasingly important!

The Top 5 Questions You Must Ask Vendors of Practice Management Systems

undefinedWhen deciding between practice management systems, and which one you should purchase for your practice, there are many questions and costs you must think through; unfortunately, many of these questions are ones that sales teams are hoping you don't think to ask them.

It is imperative that you are aware of what your office needs, how your staff works, and what it's going to cost you in order to make your workflow as efficient as possible. Maintaining an efficient workflow is the key to saving money in the end. Make sure you are aware of any annual fees, support, hardware costs, and upgrade costs that each system might have.

How Cloud Technology is Enhancing Practice Management Software

undefinedSometimes it can be fun to live in the past, but when dealing with health records and practice management, your office needs to be up to date and using the most current technology. If you are still using paper records and bulky in-office servers, it is definitely time for you to learn how cloud technology enhances practice management software. The cloud is here to stay, and with all the perks it has to offer, you are lucky that it is!

The Perks of Cloud-Based Practice Management Software

1. Consistent Spending. The majority of cloud-based solutions use the Software-as-a-Service model (SaaS). So rather than having a large expense up front, with heavy hardware and software costs, you can pay on an affordable monthly pricing plan that includes all the necessary upkeep. You'll know exactly how much you'll be spending each month, with no hidden costs.

What Do You Need From Optical Practice Management Systems?

undefinedJust about everyone has made an impulse purchase on something. Whether it's shoes, a new TV, or even a new car. Maybe you had your heart set on your dream car, but after shopping around and exploring all of your options you realize that your dream car might not be your dream car anymore, and that it was missing some important features you were really looking for.

If you're out shopping for optical practice management systems you might be quick to like one of the first systems you see a demo of, but that doesn't mean you should stop looking. If you don't take the time to evaluate all of your options you might miss out on some features that you didn't even think about in the first place! Here's a quick list of perks and features to keep an eye out for as you're shopping for a new practice management system.

Is a Cloud-Based Practice Management and EHR Right for You?

undefinedWe know that you've invested plenty of time and effort into making sure that you run your practice as efficiently as possible. But sometimes, it's not the amount of hard work you put into your practice that makes it successful, but simply assuring that your practice management & EHR system is up to date, and helping your practice in every way that it can. Here's a few reasons why adopting a cloud-based practice management and EHR system is key to keeping your practice efficient.

How Your Practice can Benefit From a Cloud-Based Practice Management and EHR

Selecting an EHR Software: 5 Questions to Ask

undefinedWith hundreds of EHR software out there to choose from, selecting the right one for your practice can get overwhelming. Talk about making a decision! For starters, you can reflect on the goals your practice hopes to achieve with an EHR. This will help you pick out certain features and functions that you desire in an EHR software. To help you decide on your goals, we have 5 questions that can help you brainstorm and determine what EHR software is right for you!

5 Questions to Ask When Selecting an EHR Software

1. What are Your Needs?

Start by developing a list of specific features you're looking for in an EHR and rank them by importance. Some common features include e-prescribing, a patient portal, meaningful use certification, and graphical annotation. On top of these features, you should also think about ease of use and what type of technology your office is capable of running. Do you have technologically savvy staff that are comfortable with using new software? Do you have to go through multiple clicks to get a simple job done? What about accessibility? Would you prefer to work on a system that is optimized for tablet use? Accessing your needs and wants will eliminate a big portion of EHR vendors.

Making the Switch to Optical Practice Management Systems

undefinedTechnology developments are affecting every industry, including healthcare. These developments are making daily tasks for practices a whole lot easier. These developments are being made to the instruments and devices in your office, frames in your inventory, and the software on your computers. When it comes to optical practice management systems, there are some things you should know about new advances in technology, and how to make the switch to a new system.

Deciding whether to acquire change can be difficult. Sometimes you become so used to what you already have that you are willing to put up with the overbearing downfalls. But putting up with an inefficient practice could have negative affects to your business in the long run. Practice management solutions will make your day-to-day exam process quick and organized.

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