The following set of factors act as a guide for physicians and Anesthesiologists looking to purchase a specialty-specific, or in this case, an Anesthesiology-specific EHR.
The Size of the Practice
There are some software which are developed, built, and catered towards large sized practices, while there are other softwares which have the capacity and capability to handle medium and smaller sized practices. The size of the practice is usually determined by the number of physicians working at that practice, so if there is a practice that houses more than 20 physicians, it will normally be considered a large practice while if there is a practice that houses 5 physicians, it will be categorized as a small practice. Similarly, EHR software are developed to handle the data, the load and the features of either large practices or smaller ones. Therefore, it is important to determine the size of your practice and see if the software system has the capability to handle that size.
On-Site vs Cloud Technologies
Currently, vendors are offering two different types of technologies for data storage, access and retrieval. On-site refers to when the software is installed on the physicians own system and the data is stored at their own servers. In this method, the physicians will hence have the bear the costs and expenses of physically storing the servers, systems and also handle the maintenance and upgrades of these systems, which can be quite costly, plus physicians do not have the time to worry about these things hence they will be required to hire an additional IT person, adding to the overall costs of the practice.
Awards and Certifications
One of the most important factors that Anesthesiologists need to consider before selecting their Anesthesiology specific EHRs is to check if that EHR is backed by the industry standard certifications and have the support of being awarded by regulatory bodies. The important certifications to consider are the ONC-ATCB Certification (Office of the National Coordinator – Authorized Testing and Certification Body) and HIPAA compliance, which regulates the usage of patient health information, keeping privacy and security as a main priority.
Furthermore, it is important to consider Anesthesiology specific features in the software such as specific diagnostic and procedural codes, the ability to integrate with devices such as EKG and ECG as well as the capacity to interact with physicians’ notes and records. Pre-designed templates for Anesthesiology should include templates such as different types of anesthesia such as cardiac and pediatric as well as other complications that Anesthesiology usually caters to.
There is no doubt that finding the right EHR can be a difficult task, but with the above-mentioned factors, it can be made easy as well as accurate.