Being at a large practice with three other doctors, Dr. Ben Harvey of Eye Care Oklahoma, Inc. needs a Practice Management and Electronic Healthcare Records (EHR) system that is equal parts accessible and easy to navigate. Their optical shop, First Look Eyewear, had already been utilizing Compulink to manage their retail business when they decided to implement EHR into their clinic. Aside from the experience and trust they had developed with Compulink, the decision to implement Ophthalmology Advantage was made easier because Compulink was the only vendor who could offer them an EHR and Practice Management software designed specifically for ophthalmology, integrated with a proven optical point-of-sale solution. Dr. Harvey appreciates that Ophthalmology Advantage is adaptable to the needs of the entire practice and provides the tools to help them grow their business while improving patient care.
Managing a Practice
Although Dr. Harvey joined the practice after the transition to Advantage, other office staff members recall a smooth transition. The major key was office preparation and also that they allowed themselves time to adjust to the software. Management acknowledges how the implementation coordinators from Compulink were extremely helpful and patient in training the staff and monitoring the move. Within the course of a year they had completely and transitioned from paper charts to EHR and were seeing the full advantages.
The tracking and reports that Advantage provides have helped management develop processes and checkpoints that have improved their oversight of the business. Over time, they have used Advantage to pinpoint areas that need improvement, such as billing and collections, marketing, and so on, and then use that data to recruit and train the right people to make those improvements. They credit Advantage for helping them put together an effective billing team, which has helped them keep outstanding accounts receivables to a minimum.
For Dr. Harvey, Advantage offers an ease of use capability that allows the whole practice to operate more efficiently. They save time and keep all doctors on the same page by customizing the tabs in each patient chart. The front desk determines the type of visit during scheduling, which prompts the technician to generate the correct pre-set chart with a different layout and function specific to each patient’s needs. These customized charts always include tabs for their clinical standards such as intraocular pressure and motility, while new patient glaucoma exams auto-generate gonioscopy and visual field tabs. He appreciates having everything available at the click of a mouse rather than searching for charts and trying to determine why a patient was referred. The Instant Messaging function keeps the staff within communication without having to track someone down, and the ToDo feature allows them to post alerts to a patient file so all staff is kept in the loop. “The ability to cross-talk within the practice keeps us all on the same page,” says Harvey, “and the customizable chart layout improves scheduling, gives us a more efficient work up, and ultimately allows us to see more patients.”
Advantage provides in-depth, yet organized, patient charts where he can easily store and access records of glaucoma imaging, intraocular lens calculation, and corneal tomography. As a glaucoma specialist, Dr. Harvey loves how easy it is to pull up all imaging related to glaucoma, and compare it side by side rather than leafing through thick paper charts. Flipping through and comparing visual field tests taken annually over ten years can be tedious and extremely time consuming. Now with Advantage he can simply go to the visual field tab and pull them all up side by side with the click of a mouse. Having the ability to easily compare Optical Coherence Tomography results or analyze pressure readings, and easily compare these results over time is another useful adjunct in determining glaucoma progression. Harvey says, “In mere minutes we can see diagnostic glaucoma imaging evaluations and the intraocular pressure at those specified dates which paints us a complete picture of disease over time.” Additionally, this information can be graphically represented on the intraocular pressure flow sheet for the patient to see firsthand, which is key to patient education. “Because glaucoma is a nebulous disease and difficult for patients to grasp, these are great tools to have in one place during the exam.”
Advantage stores all of the key data his patients need to access through the Compulink’s own integrated Patient Portal, which eliminates the need for an outside service and keeps the practice qualified for Meaningful Use. Advantage also makes it easy to customize and generate reference letters to other physicians with just a few clicks as opposed to having to dictate, transcribe, edit, print and mail.
The patient tracking function allows him to see every minute of a patient’s visit, from check in and the waiting room, to time with the technician, in imaging, with the doctor, and finally, to check out. This allows the practice to create a metric and see the rate limiting factor and where the workflow gets hung up. They can then grade the performance of each employee. “Advantage saves us time and keeps patients moving smoothly through the office,” says Harvey.