Over the past several years, electronic health records have become much more refined for the individual user or specific medical practice specialty. The passage of the HITECH Act in 2009 led to mass adoption of EHRs and the market quickly became saturated with vendors.
Every medical practice operates uniquely based on the provider and their patient care path. Too many EHR products on the market today are rigorous and forced to make adjustments based on the computer programmers’ idea of a specialty workflow rather than the provider’s needs. It makes sense. The goal of any business is to generate revenue, and, in order to achieve that it is imperative to appeal to as many consumers as possible. A general product enables widespread sales, but it isn’t without some collateral damage.
Now, after their first experience, many buyers are in the market again, this time with a much better understanding of what they require from the system – namely, a customized EHR. Eventually, the experience of a hard-to-use system reaches a peak and the provider wants and needs a system better suited for their practice. Considering the substantial investment they make in purchasing the system, this should not be too much to ask.
As providers browse the market, the individual workflow should be a top consideration, the reason being “hardcoding”. Whether they are first-time buyers or are searching for a replacement system, the ability to tailor-make workflow adjustments and personalized templates is simply a must, and that is exactly what a customized EHR offers.
It is easy to be drawn in when companies are emphasizing the “preloaded specialty templates” they offer. Of course, having preloaded templates for reoccurring encounter types is a major benefit and time saver, especially for busy physicians; however, the aforementioned can be much better served if the provider can easily make adjustments and add custom circumstantial notes on the fly.
In many cases, the big name electronic health record companies feel they know best when it comes to how a provider of a particular specialty should care for and document patient encounters. A system like PrognoCIS carries a solid name in the industry, and yet is able to work with individual medical practices to adapt the system to the individual workflow requirements.
Electronic health records can make a world of a difference if an optimal system is being used. However, based on the number of medical practices looking to make the switch to a better product, many practices are currently using a system not quite befitting their unique needs in this now more-mature market.
Author: Chris Ferguson