What Is Practice Management Software?
Practice management software allows you to more efficiently manage the non-medical tasks involved with running a medical practice. This software allows you to input data such as billing information, medical history, patient demographics, and appointment schedules in a safe and secure location. It can drastically improve your workflow, making it easier to access and edit patient information while reducing the amount of time spent on administrative or clerical paperwork. And with direct, easy access to electronic health records (EHRs) and electronic medical records (EMRs) providers can improve and increase the amount of time spent with patients.
Benefits of Practice Management Software
Beyond assisting with insurance paperwork, helping to log and track patient information, and streamlining the overall process of day-to-day tasks, some of the advantages include:
- Cost and time savings: Practice management software greatly reduces the amount of time spent collecting and verifying patient information. You get more time to spend with patients and less time worrying about paperwork.
- Integrated systems: When paperwork is completed and filed by hand, it gets filed into different locations according to its content. With practice management software, you can access and update these files from a single location, whether it be billing information, insurance information, or medical histories. It also cuts down on the amount of errors that may occur, thanks to both the software’s capabilities and the reduced opportunity for user error.
- Support for various sizes and types of medical practices: Practice management software is not just a tool meant for large facilities; rather, it can be used by any medical practice regardless of their specialty or staff size. Multiple types of practice management software are available, with features and templates designed to help across all aspects of the medical field.
- Quick reimbursement: With practice management software, medical billers and coders are able to find the information they need more quickly and easily than if they were searching through paper files. This allows for quicker classification and verification of claims, which leads to a faster processing of payments.
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Types of Practice Management Software
There are three main types of practice management software:
- Client server practice management software: Typically, this type of system requires you to lease a server that has the software pre-installed. Once the server is on site and installed, staff members have network access to the software through their computers. Client server practice management software grants a wider access to more employees, but can also be cost prohibitive.
- Desktop practice management software: Unlike a client server system, this software is intended to be used on a single computer. While multiple people may be allowed to use the software, it can still only be accessed from a designated computer and is considered to be more restrictive than other practice management software types.
- Internet-based practice management software: Also referred to as cloud- or web-based practice management software, this is the most flexible of the software system options. Rather than storing the information on a local server, the information is stored on the internet, making it easily accessible on multiple devices from anywhere within your practice as well as (should it be necessary) any other facilities that your practice may operate from. It should be noted, however, that internet-based systems are slower than those running off a local server and come with the risk of internet disruptions.
How Much Does Practice Management Software Cost?
Costs vary depending on multiple factors, including the features you choose, size of the practice, tasks you need it to perform, and the vendor you purchase through. Before choosing a vendor, discuss your needs in detail and ask them to explain all of the costs associated with the package you choose.
- CollaborateMD: Prices start at $165 per month, per provider, but more comprehensive plans can reach costs of $235 to $300 monthly per provider. CollaborateMD’s only focus is practice management, but they partner with multiple EHR vendors to help provide the most comprehensive system for your practice.
- iSalus Healthcare: This practice management solution comes at a lower starting cost than many, with their most basic package costing $100 to $150 per month, per provider. Their more comprehensive packages reach costs of up to $330 to $500 monthly per provider. They offer configurations for a variety of different specialties and come with an integrated EHR system.
- Kareo: Practice management software from Kareo comes with 90 days of free training, customizable dashboards, and an integrated EHR system. Prices start at $150 per month, per provider and cost up to $300 monthly per provider.