You already know that it’s critical to have good medical scheduling software, but you may not know exactly how to evaluate all the options that are out there to find the one that works best for your clinic. You need scheduling software that interfaces easily and seamlessly with your practice management system and your EHR software and is a simple, user-friendly tool for your staff to schedule patients. Here’s a definitive guide to help you select your software.
Understanding Medical Scheduling Software
Patient scheduling software is a tool that your clinic uses to get patients scheduled to see specific providers for their medical concerns. If you have multiple providers, you need a system that allows you to coordinate calendars, find available time slots, and schedule patients quickly and easily.
Review Available Features
The first step in selecting your medical scheduling software is to identify the features that you want and need, then compare those with the available features from vendors. It’s important to note that more software features doesn’t always mean a better scheduling software program—sometimes the simple ones that provide exactly the pieces you need are better and more manageable than something with all the bells and whistles. Here are some of the things to look for:
- High-level view of provider availability
- Integration with practice management software and EHR to track patients from initial scheduling and check-in through to appointment completion and checkout
- Automated appointment reminders via text and email to reduce no-shows
- User-friendly and intuitive interface for your staff to work in the program
- Customizable appointment types based on time, diagnosis, or treatment
- Integration with a patient portal for easy patient “self-service” prior to and after an appointment
- Cloud-based so it’s accessible from anywhere, including mobile devices, so providers and staff can see schedule changes and updates
Implementation & Training
If you run a small clinic, finding a scheduling software provider that offers training and tech support for your staff is invaluable. Find out if the vendor offers ongoing training, if it’s something that is easy and convenient for your staff to access (for example, on-demand and web-based trainings), and if they provide ongoing tech support. This can save you a lot of money by not needing to hire your own IT staff to manage the system.
Security in medical practice management software is more important than ever before, and the volume of attacks on medical practices is increasing. Make sure your vendor places a high priority on HIPAA and data security to protect against unwanted access.
To learn more about all of our scheduling capabilities at AdvancedMD and how we can improve your scheduling process as a small or independent practice, contact us for a demo today.