Enhancing Pain Management Practice: Useful EHR Utilization Strategies   

Enhancing Pain Management Practice - Useful EHR Utilization Strategies
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In a larger medical context, “pain management” is all about helping a patient regulate the pain they’re experiencing through various medications, procedures, exercises, and even therapies. For the best treatment, medical professionals may recommend a specific approach or even a combination of several. 

With that in mind, the role of EHR in pain management becomes simple: it’s a tool that helps to keep all key stakeholders in a patient’s journey on the same page and moving in the same direction. 

Understanding the Role of EHR in Pain Management

Think of an EHR solution as a “single source of truth” for not just an individual patient’s journey through pain management, but for everyone who sees a particular practice. Doctors and other medical professionals don’t have to go wading through filing cabinets to find clinical charts and important documents prior to an appointment. They don’t have to wait for other facilities to fax over any records. Everything is available within the EHR itself. 

At any given moment, they’re seconds away from understanding who else a patient may be seeing. What medications they may be taking. How they have progressed (or not) over time. 

Not only that, but it does all this in a way that makes things exponentially easier for the medical professionals themselves. They can find information faster and make informed decisions just as quickly. This leads to improved operational efficiency and cut costs over time. It is also a tool that 75% of providers say allows them to deliver better patient care, which in and of itself is the most important factor of all. 

Benefits of EHR Utilization in Pain Management

One of the most significant benefits of EHR software for pain management is that professionals have access to fully customizable templates that can be changed depending on the patient. Physicians can document absolutely everything about patient encounters, including but not limited to things like: 

  • Ongoing pain assessments. 
  • Active or past treatment plans. 
  • Progress notes. 

Not only does this help ensure accuracy, but it also provides a secure way to store and transmit this information as well. All specialists whom a patient may be seeing have access to the same data. Therefore, they’re all working from the same set of facts when making determinations about which steps to take next. 

Many of the best EHR for pain management tools also have integrated pain assessment functionality. They come with features like the Visual Analog Scale (VAS) or the Numeric Rating Scale (NRS) built right in. This helps to eliminate confusion and creates a much-needed level of consistency in what is being documented. This is again pivotal when information is being shared among many providers who are all giving input. 

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Common Challenges in EHR Implementation

Of course, none of this is to say that investing in EHR implementation for your own practice will be totally straightforward. The initial tasks required to get everything up and running are often among the most common challenges that most practices face. 

Going beyond the cost of use, there are other expenses associated with most EHR tools. You’ll need to spend training your people on how to get the most out of it and how to use it properly. You’ll need the physical infrastructure necessary to maintain the deployment. You also need ongoing support for troubleshooting, upgrades, and more. 

A significant amount of time will also be necessary to make sure the tool is streamlining workflows for practice staff members. Don’t forget that such a tool is supposed to make things easier and more efficient – not just “different.” 

This will require that the tool be adapted to meet a practice’s specific needs, which will take some time to get right. Practices will need to partner directly with their vendors to make sure this transitional period goes as smoothly as possible. 

Strategies for Optimizing Your Pain Management EHR

The number one step to take to help optimize your pain management EHR involves adopting a standardized documentation process. This may seem counterintuitive because so much of an EHR’s functionality is customizable down to the patient, but it does make long-term sense. 

Everything from causation to the frequency and duration of pain someone is experiencing to previously attempted treatments, alleviating and aggravating factors, and more needs to be documented in a standardized way. This present’s a patient’s status in a type of “universal language,” so to speak. There’s no risk of someone misinterpreting notes on a previous visit if everything is following the same rigid framework. 

This then makes it easier to support a lot of the other benefits of pain management EHR software, like the ability to securely share that information with other medical professionals. 

Choose the Correct EHR for Pain Management

Pain management EHR software

When choosing any type of EHR solution for pain management, you must first start with the unique needs of your practice – not the tool itself. Make a list of the functionality that is most important to you, which can include things like: 

  • Support for clinical charting and documentation. 
  • Integration with other areas of your practice, like billing or scheduling. 
  • The ability to fill e-prescriptions. 
  • A real-time dashboard for practice and patient analytics. 
  • Referral and order management functionality. 
  • Pre-authorizations and case management modules. 

Once you’ve established a baseline as to what your needs are, you can then research your available EHR options to find the one that checks as many of those boxes as possible. 

You’ll also want to choose pain management EHR tools that are backed by a vendor who understands your practice and who is prepared to offer ongoing support long after the purchase has been made. At a bare minimum, technical support should be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. You should have multiple options regarding how you get this support including chat, email, phone, or a ticketing system. 

The vendor should provide help documentation, training videos, and other resources as well. Any type of digital transformation as significant as embracing EHR for pain management will have a bit of a learning curve attached to it. Finding a vendor equipped to offer support can help make this process go as smoothly as possible, so you start seeing a return on your investment as soon as you can. 

Key Takeaways

  • The best EHR for pain management allows medical professionals to safely and accurately chart all information pertaining to a patient’s medical journey. 
  • That information is easily shared with others, allowing for better collaboration among professionals to help reduce or manage someone’s pain. 
  • Workflows can be customized to the patient, allowing for a more organic level of care. 
  • Improved operational efficiency leads to cost-savings for most practices. 
  • A pain management EHR system will also likely result in better patient outcomes, the importance of which cannot be overstated. 

PrognoCIS is a cloud-based EHR solution that delivers on all the benefits outlined above and more. It includes not only pain management but also practice management software, medical billing software, revenue cycle management, telemedicine, and other key modules. It offers a customizable, tailor-made workflow designed with medical clinics and hospitals in mind and it can absolutely become the cornerstone of your larger pain management efforts. 

If you’d like to find out more information about how Pain management EHR software can enhance your practice, or if you’d just like to get additional assistance choosing the best solution to fit your needs, please don’t delay - contact Bizmatics, Inc. today. 

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