With the recession currently plaguing the lives of most Americans, spending money to implement Electronic Medical Records solution into practice may seem a bad idea. However, a great number of physicians have successfully implemented the “right-fit” EMR in their clinics to discover the increased efficiency of their operations.
Most physicians are lured by Web-based EMRs as an effective way to implement EMR solutions with its low initial investment. Yet Web-based and client/server EMR systems have their own unique advantages and disadvantages. Finding the correct model depends on the special requirements of your practice.
Web-based EMR presents enticing advantages, but there are some important points to consider when deciding to implement a web-based system.
1. A “high-speed” internet connection is not the only requirement to run a Web-based EMR. Discover if your computers possess the required bandwidth to work efficiently. Consult your EMR vendor for the requirements and your Internet service provider for the available bandwidth options.
The bandwidth depends on the number of users and volume of data exchanged. In cases where data exchange increases, your bandwidth must follow suit as well. Review carefully the EMR vendor’s recommendations before signing up for a bandwidth plan.
2. You must have a reliable Internet connection for most of the time upload and download speeds vary on certain times of the day and the bandwidth usage of nearby businesses. Plan ahead and purchase extra bandwidth to avoid slow-downs when charting patient meetings.
When you’re Internet pipe is shared with other businesses, most likely data speeds would fluctuate during the day, depending on their usage of the connection. Best to ask your Internet service provider of the expected uptime based on documented evidence. However it’s better to get a pipe for your own clinic. Integrate with the EMR provider to develop a backup system accommodating paper charting in case the system goes down.
3. What if the EMR vendor leaves you behind? Would you be able to retrieve vital data from their servers in a usable format?
Working with an EMR vendor entails a strong partnership, open to discuss every possible scenario through the vendor’s sales representative. Working with an experienced EMR consulting company is better to help establish communication with your EMR vendor. Reflect on asking backup files from your vendor on a regular basis.
4. A Web-based EMR turns you dependent to the vendor’s customer support with no local control over the server. There is no certainty whether your vendor would reliably and promptly support you and your staff and resolve urgent and critical issues. Early on, learn from the vendor its support structure especially beyond working hours.
5. Will your data be moved smoothly in case you decide to move from a web-based to a server-based EMR in the future? Even if you believe it least likely to happen, it is best to discuss early with the vendor the process to avoid future mishaps.
Many web-based EMR systems have worked successfully for most physicians. By understanding the handful of caveats mentioned above, you’ll stand a better chance of implementing a successful web-based EMR for your practice.
For more information on this topic, please see the original article from RevenueXL Inc. at: http://www.revenuexl.com/blog/bid/23338/Web-based-EMR-Low-Investment-Great-Idea-But