You’ve already made the decision to purchase a new EHR software. In fact, it’s arriving in a couple of weeks. It’s time to get your practice in fighting shape! Do you know everyone’s strengths and weaknesses? Do you have a timeline? Do you know what’s going to happen throughout the implementation process? You need to get answers to all of these questions in order to really prepare your practice. And this should all be done even before the EHR arrives.
2 Ways to Prepare Your Practice for an EHR Software
Evaluate Staff’s Computer Proficiency
How proficient is your staff with using technology? Are they afraid of it or do they embrace it? EHRs are a major introduction of technology, so know what their computer-threshold looks like. Your most tech-savvy team members are like the experienced campers. They will know how to pitch a tent and use a compass. Those that aren’t as savvy will need more instruction. It doesn’t mean they can’t do it, it just means they need a Pack Leader who is patient and will show them the way.
But, if your practice is moving from another system, is your staff only using it to complete a task a certain way? How adaptable are they to different platforms? Most importantly, can they think critically about how to interact with a different system? Some of your staff might need a refresher course on their basic computer skills to get them prepared. Find out if anyone is uncomfortable using the computer and get them up-to-speed with basic computer training, either through resources online, or a community college if your practice has the budget for it.
Know the Implementation Plan
You’ll need a solid plan that you and your staff can follow throughout the implementation process. When everyone knows what they can expect and when, they can be better participants in the process. Communicate your expectations to your vendor of when you would like the system to be available and work with them to come up with a timeline and a go-live date. Also, make sure that you know what tasks you and your vendor are responsible for. Many EHR implementations get delayed because the practice is slow to provide information to their vendor. You don’t want to be the one holding things up!
Get answers to the following questions to help build a timeline:
- When can you and your staff start training?
- How long will training take?
- When will the system be complete with your special feature requests, integrations, and data migrations?
- Is there anything you need to submit to your EHR vendor to move the process along?
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