Discovering the Art of Chiropractic Economics
The initial cost of an electronic clinic management system has many Chiropractors feeling it would be a poor investment. However statistics prove digital clinics more than pay for themselves in the end.
Preparing for the Switch to Digital
Like the ads littering our televisions detailing the switch to digital cable, a majority of doctors understand the switch to electronic health records (EHR) and digital clinic management is rapidly approaching. However relatively few of these same doctors have made the complete digital switch, instead they choose to only adopt a few electronic aspects of a true electronic system. These clinics fail to achieve Future Health's truly integrated system found in their Virtual Office Suite (VOS) Software to transform their clinic into one lean mean fighting machine.
A Roadblock on the Path to EHR
Many practitioners feel that they should avoid the cost of obtaining Future Health's EHR until EHR software become a mandatory part of our health care system. However when the costs are evaluated, such beliefs are found to be incorrect. When examining the cost-benefit ratios, there is clear documentation of the fact that EHR software is a sound investment with a good return. Implementation of the VOS system provided by Future Health does require some planning within the clinic in order to maximize efficiency, but the cost, time and effort invested in the implementation quickly ends up paying for itself when your clinic converts into truly digital clinic.
Areas of Returns when Utilizing EHR
- 1) Clinic wastes are dramatically reduced.
- 2) Amount of billable services are increased.
- 3) Common billing errors are eliminated.
Help the Planet and Yourself by Going Green!
The recent push towards helping out Mother Earth has pressed many businesses towards evaluating the affect their business has on the planet. Digital practices not only help to reduce the amount of paper in a clinic management system but ends up saving you valuable profits as well! File folders, patient files, x-ray jackets, and many other paper forms can easily cut into your clinic's profits. These forms are all replaced by their digital counterparts: emails, electronic faxes, digital documentation and electronic billing.
Less Waste means a Lower Overhead
All of this paper documentation and management requires the constant attention from clinic staff. This dutifully attention ends up costing you money. The average practice spends a minimum of $2,400 a year pulling and re-filing paper records. This lower end estimate does not include other hidden costs like: time spent looking for misplaced files, creating new files, repairing old files and making copies. They also fail to include the purchase of HIPAA-grade storage cabinets and acquiring storage space for these documents. All of these expenses are eliminated when your practice goes paperless.
Billable Hours Increase
According to the NBCE 2005 Job Analysis of Chiropractic, DCs only spend 50% of their time in direct patient care. The other 50% is spent in documentation, patient education and clinic management. These non-billable hours represent a cost that limits income potential.
With clinic interoperability, digitally integrated clinics have the ability to reduce non-billable doctor hours and increase the opportunity for direct patient care. The VOS system provides clinics with electronic documentation, EHR, and other software that includes scheduling, billing, and storage of every patient record. With this digital clinic, these three major drains to doctor time can be dramatically reduced by half the time currently spent.
Same Clinic Times with More Patients
With a digital clinic enhancing billable time, doctors can now utilize 25% more of their day dealing with patient visits. This repurposed time has now transferred from the cost side of the balance sheet to the profit side. Throughout the course of a week, doctors add an additional day's worth of patient visits and improve patients' standard of care. These results potentially increase billings by as much as 25% of the current levels due to creating increased patient capacity.
Orderly Billing Increases Clinic Revenue
The majority of lost doctor income results from billing errors. In my own personal consulting, I have seen chiropractors shocked to discover anywhere from $300 to $1,300 dollars left unbilled over a 30 day period. The amount left unbilled in some clinics is in the thousands of dollars each month. Where does all this money go?
Well, the more human elements involved as a document passes through in a business, the greater likelihood for the document to contain an error. Typos, dropped data and documentation without necessary details end up leading to lost revenue. So does confusion over service codes and failing to meet key treatment milestones. Future Health's Electronic Billing software coordinates these processes throughout your clinic eliminating these common billing inaccuracies.
VOS Results in Greater Returns
Instead of having multiple human elements involved, why not have automatic entry of service codes from your electronic chart directly into the billing department? Instead of confusion over diagnosis and service codes, why not have alerts to tell you when there is a coding problem so it can be remedied immediately? And while you are at it, receive a reminder that a progress evaluation is scheduled for the next visit, and that you want the front desk to double-check coverage limitations on specialized services. These are just a few examples of the efficiency VOS can bring to your billing process.
Adopt Future Health Software and Profit from your Investment
The kind of clinical capabilities just described are currently being used by adopters of EHR and electronic clinic management. Many have found that their initial investment has already paid for itself. They no longer see their digital clinic as a cost of doing business, but rather, as a tool to expand their practices and build revenue in ways never feasible with their previous paper-based systems.
What does Future Health's VOS software provide?
VOS can do all of the following from a single interface:
- Schedule a patient visit,
- Document the encounter,
- Save the daily documentation to an EHR,
- Bill for the visit,
- And even provide custom patient education specific to their diagnosis.
What are the benefits of the VOS software?
- Reduce staff hours on mundane tasks and automate certain procedures
- Transition staff to more patient-centered responsibilities
- Promote profit centers with digital patient education for more awareness of services offered
- Achieve better compliance and more referrals with digital education tied to the clinical records
- Analyze utilization statistics and performance by provider
- Learn which third party payers pay appropriately and bill correctly the first time
- Reduce overhead costs and increase profit margin