We recently released an ebook titled, 12 Insider Secrets from America's Top ODs. In this eBook we interviewed a wide range of ODs in optical from students to long-time practioners to corporate ODs to new practice owners. Throughout the eBook we chat about anything from practice growth hacking to managing your staff to becoming a leader in the industry.
Today, we pulled out an excerpt from the eBook on maximizing software technology to foster growth. For this subject we interview Dr. Matt Stanley, OD and Owner of Eye Care Associates of Manhattan, P.A.
How to Utilize Software Technology to Grow Your Practice
What role does technology play in your practice?
When I bought my practice, I knew one thing I wanted my practice to be was modern and high-tech. I wanted patients to be wowed, and my workflow to be more efficient because of the technology I was using. As a self-admitted tech geek, I also wanted to use technology to make optometry fun and exciting for myself and my staff.
Over the years we have invested in lots of tools and devices so that everything patient-facing is electronic and as modern as it can be. But, when it came time for me to chart patient exam findings, assessments, treatment plans, and interpretations and reports, and for my staff to import the data from all our instruments, we realized the technology of our practice management and EHR system was holding us back from being that modern practice we had set out to be.
How did you overcome these software challenges?
The system I was using early on was an in-house server based system that wasn't intuitive or easy to learn, and with lots of staff turnover, I needed a system that was easy to learn. On top of that, IT maintenance was a hassle every day, and I was wasting too much time just to chart a complete patient record. I knew it was time to as least look at my options for a system that could better suit my practice's needs.
A few things I knew I needed from a system was one with a more user-friendly experience for my staff, one that I could use on tablets to easily share information with patients and carry it around the office, a system built in the cloud so I could let go of the burden of IT maintenance, and ideally a solution that could be a one-stop shop software for my practice so I wouldn't have to purchase a bunch of integrations or add-ons.
How does cloud-based software technology make your practice more profitable?
With my server-based system, I was spending an extra 30 minutes a night, after seeing patients, backing up my data. Plus, when a software update was made I was spending my free time on the weekend updating all 14 computers in the office. Cloud-based software has saved me significant time and money that I was investing in an IT consultant, and I can easily access the system from home which was something that would have required a VPN and a secure remote desktop service with my old system.
In what ways is your practice management and EHR system helping your practice day in and day out today?
Making the switch from our server-based system to an all-inclusive, cloud-based system has increased my charting efficiency, my staff has a much easier time learning and taking advantage of the system's features, and I'm able to navigate the system easily without opening new tabs or clicking through multiple pages or windows. Because it's all-inclusive, the different parts of the software all talk to each other, from scheduling and insurance benefit retrieval to check-in to the exam documentation and coding to optical and contact lenses to checkout to order placement to insurance claim creation and filing, and finally, to ERA auto posting - it has minimized data entry tasks for everyone. To top it off, the system is visually appealing and fits the high-tech feel of our office.
Best of all, the time that the new system has saved me each day has allowed our practice to open up three more exam appointment slots each day. That was just an added bonus that I wasn't expecting I'd gain from making an electronic health record change.
Take a look at the system I use by requesting a demo here.
Download the full eBook to learn more from America's Top ODs.