Finding Value in the Patient Portal

Many physicians are still unsure about the value of a patient portal and how implementing one can lead to better care. I was recently asked the following questions in a group forum discussion about patient portals. My responses are based on personal experience, as well as feedback from clients and colleagues within the healthcare industry. What is the value to a provider of having a patient portal? The value comes from the automation of every day processes such as: …

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The Key to Healthcare Interoperability Is Open Platforms

Interoperability has become a hot topic in the world of health IT – yet due to its inherent complexity, it remains the biggest hurdle to efficient and effective use of communication across a broad spectrum of systems and solutions. Whether healthcare organizations are using EMRs, telemedicine, patient portals, mHealth or EMPIs, it is necessary for there to be a “common denominator” between those systems in order to achieve interconnectivity. The common denominator is an open architecture platform by …

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Three Ways to Encourage Repeat Business to Your Medical Practice

With healthcare organizations competing online for the attention of potential patients, it can be easy for physician practices to get caught up in the chase and forget about the people that they’ve already worked hard to attract. This occurs despite the fact that attracting a new patient costs five times more than it does to keep an old one, an expense that many practices can’t afford now that rising healthcare costs are keeping patients from going to the …

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Avoid The ROI Trap With Your Patient Engagement Initiative

The focus on return on investment (ROI) has become more important than ever these days in the current healthcare market, particularly when it comes to implementing new IT-based solutions. Seeing as many healthcare providers have been affected by unfulfilled promises with their current (or former) EMR, it is extremely important to approach patient engagement carefully while not obsessing with or getting caught in the ROI trap. The ROI Paradox Let’s face it, if you are investing time and …

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Creating a Successful Patient Engagement Strategy

Communication is an integral component of patient engagement, but it isn’t easy to accomplish – particularly due to the fact that people communicate, process and interpret interactions differently. There are some ways, however, to overcome communication barriers. Healthcare professionals just need to understand that successful patient engagement strategies require patience. In fact, developing a successful strategy, carrying it out, and experiencing positive results could take months or even years. The sooner organizations accept this reality, the greater chances …

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Six Tips for Achieving Meaningful Use

Everyone in healthcare knows about the EHR Incentive Programs and the stimulus money that doctors can receive if they successfully attest to Meaningful Use of electronic health record technology. However, participating in the program can be a daunting feat for first-timers. For EHR newcomers looking to achieve Meaningful Use and qualify for federal incentive payments, we offer the following tips: 1. Decide which program you want to participate in. There are two incentive programs, Medicare and Medicaid, but …

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The Future of Patient Portals in Healthcare

Patient portals are online applications that allow patients to access, interact and communicate with their healthcare providers. The features provided by patient portals enable patients to interact with their medical information via electronic means. Patients using a portal would be more informed and could take ownership of their medical records, therefore enhancing the patient-doctor relationship and ensuring accuracy of their health record, as well. So where is the future of patient portals headed? To answer this question, it …

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Why Are Healthcare Organizations Switching EHRs?

After a recent survey by Black Book Rankings found that 17 percent of doctors want to switch their electronic health record (EHR) software, the company predicted that 2013 would be the year of the great EHR vendor switch. To gain some insight into why so many healthcare organizations are unhappy with their EHRs, we sat down with our National Sales Manager, Ron Shoop. What are some of the main reasons healthcare organizations are switching EHR’s? There are several …

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4 Factors to Consider Before Purchasing a Patient Portal With EHR Software Integrations

Once considered a nice option for EHRs, patient portals are now becoming a necessity for small practices and hospitals alike. Unfortunately, not all patient portals are created equal, and many lack important capabilities or features. Selecting a patient portal with sub-par EHR software integrations can severely limit an EHR’s ability to unlock its full potential of benefits, and it can easily increase costs for physicians in the long run. Many patient portal vendors employ strategies to help physicians …

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Interoperability Device Savings Estimated to Exceed $30 Billion

A recent study by the West Health Institute, an independent non-profit research organization, found that hospitals could save more than $30 billion by improving interoperability between medical device systems. The comprehensive study, titled “The Value of Medical Device Interoperability,” was released and reviewed last month at a hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health. The study focused on waste – or any activity that does not add value to the health care system – and …

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