Running a health care practice is not easy, regardless of the size of the practice. In fact, running a small practice can be harder than running a larger one.
In physician-owned practices, there are various tasks that need to be taken care of to provide amazing overall service for patients. Physicians carry the heavy responsibility of providing the best possible health care. However, physicians who run their own practices must also carry the added responsibility of taking charge of their business.
Balancing the medical and business side of the job can be a huge challenge. Oftentimes, it can feel like there isn’t enough time in the day to do everything. All the necessary administrative, financial, regulatory, and medical tasks that need to be done for every patient can easily pile up.
These can lead to overall inefficiency, which can, in turn, adversely affect patient and staff satisfaction as well as the practice’s bottom line.
As such, improving practice management is essential — and for that, we need practice management software.
Understanding Practice Management
Physicians and other medical workers looking to improve their practice need practice management software to maximize their potential and the valuable services they provide. So, what exactly is practice management?
Practice management encompasses overseeing everything needed to ensure smooth day-to-day operations of the medical practice. This includes all the decision-making, actions, and resources that may pertain to patients and their care.
According to the American Medical Association, the goal of medical practice management is to enhance overall practice efficiency, raise professional satisfaction, and improve the delivery of patient care.
Large hospitals and small clinics all use practice management software to ensure all administrative tasks are well-managed — from registration and scheduling all the way to patient accounting and reporting.
What Is Practice Management Software?
Practice management software is usually deployed in one of the following ways:
Practice management software is a type of program that manages the day-to-day tasks required to keep the practice running smoothly. It is designed to help medical offices, clinics, and hospitals run more efficiently no matter their size.
Different practices use their management software for different things. For example, small and medium-sized healthcare practices generally use a practice management system for their daily administrative and financial operations.
Meanwhile, larger offices may prioritize using their system to organize and connect with patients’ electronic medical records. Other practices may use their system for out-of-network practice management or to simplify their claims filing process.
- Single desktop-only software – This type of system can only be accessed on one specific computer. Moreover, access is typically restricted to only a few people.
- Client-serve software – For this kind of system, the practice maintains the software in an on-site server that is purchased or leased from the provider. Multiple people can use the software to send or share data.
- Internet or web-based software – This type of management system is accessible via an online or web portal, so there is no need for an on-site server. However, one downside to this type of system is that the patient data may be moved or shared outside the practice.
- Cloud-based system – This is largely similar to an Internet-based system. The main difference is that cloud-based software does not require a web browser. These may be available as an independent application which allows access from virtually anywhere.
Basic Components of Practice Management Software
Using practice management software can impact almost every aspect of a practice’s clinical workflow. This allows them to improve their overall performance, better manage patient care, and provide a more satisfying experience.
There are different practice management software systems available. Some specialize in improving just one or two specific aspects of the clinical workflow. These types of systems only offer components related to the process it aims to improve, such as patient scheduling or insurance claims filing.
There are also all-in-one programs with a more robust set of features and integrations. However, the core components of management systems are largely the same.
Below are some of the general capabilities of practice management software:
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Most practice management systems provide a scheduling or appointment booking component. This allows doctors and clinic staff to do the following:
- Book patient visits
- Confirm appointments
- Track patient visits
- Remind providers of appointments
- Remind patients of appointments
- Manage the clinic’s schedules
Systems for larger health facilities allow the administrative department to create and manage the schedules of different doctors in the practice. Some systems may also allow the patients themselves to make their appointments online.
BILLING AND CLAIMS PROCESSING
Medical billing and claims management is one of the most complicated aspects of running a practice. Having a dedicated system helps streamline the filing process while also ensuring that the practice abides by all regulatory requirements.
Basic practice management software automates the billing process by pulling in patient data stored in the system and using it to create or fill in a bill template. As part of preparing for the future ICD-10 mandate, there is software that can recommend the proper diagnosis or ICD-10 codes based on the information provided.
Cloud-based practice management systems usually include automatic updates of any billing or procedural codes used in submitting claims. This allows the practice to ensure they send the correct claims regardless of any regulatory updates.
Another basic feature related to billing and claims processing is tracking the submitted electronic claims. This allows the practice to stay on top of any due balances and expected insurance payments. As part of the tracking features, the system may send alerts to either the patient or insurance provider if there are overdue payments.
Patient management systems are invaluable for keeping a record of patient demographics and organizing patient documents. It allows doctors and office staff to enter, edit, and organize patient data.
It also gives them quick access to all pertinent information given by the patient. This includes basic information, such as name and contact details. Document management systems for practices also store other crucial data, such as:
- Patients’ employer
- Insurance provider
- Insurance coverage
- Medical history
- Past prescriptions
- Reasons for past doctors’ visits
- Organize insurance payer lists
Some patient management software may also include support for integrating with imaging software or storing patients’ imaging data, while others may have an electronic fax function that allows the practice to be paperless and more sustainable.
Reporting tools allow the entire practice, from the physicians to the office staff, to take a closer look at how the clinic operates. This allows them to identify problem areas, such as things they may be spending more than necessary on, or processes that may negatively affect their overall productivity.
Some important data the software can track, organize, and report on include:
- Patient appointment no-shows
- Average time to complete administrative tasks
- Average time insurance providers reimburse claims
The reporting capabilities of practice management systems may also be used for reporting financial performance, such as patient billing and financial histories.
Benefits of Reimbursify as Practice Management Software
Reimbursify.com is practice management software that can expedite billing and insurance claim reimbursement, while ensuring accuracy.
Reimbursify offers an innovative mix of these core components or capabilities. It is the first and only mobile-enabled software platform for billing and claims management. Best of all, Reimbursify specializes in out-of-network practice management, ensuring the entire filing and reimbursement process flows much smoother.
Although it is primarily a billing and claims-focused practice management software, it can also help with medical coding, data management, reporting, and even help facilitate more patient appointments.
At the core of our functionality is our innovative Reimbursify Claim Engine. It consumes and optimizes claim data from our feature-rich apps, our intelligent FileFAST web app widgets, and our secure R-API integration capability.
Below are some of the key benefits of Reimbursify for practices and patients:
FOR MEDICAL PRACTICES
Simplify Claim Filing in Your Practice Today
Take advantage of living in the digital age and get the best possible OON practice management software for your needs. Let Reimbursify streamline your billing and claims filing process on both ends — for your practice and your patients.
Get peace of mind and focus more on providing clinical treatment to patients. Get in touch with our team to learn more about our practice management solutions and plans.
Still have questions?
Our Practice Solutions Specialists are happy to speak with you to learn more about your practice and discuss how we can help.