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7 Signs Your Healthcare Technology Tools Aren’t Optimized

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In the complex and evolving healthcare setting, organizations increasingly rely on technological investments to meet some of their biggest obstacles, enhance operations, and improve their financial health while still delivering a high standard of patient care.

Central to this are systems such as electronic health records (EHR), health information systems (HIS), and practice management (PM) software. When optimized, they help streamline workflows, enhance data management, improve patient engagement, and ultimately contribute to better health outcomes.

However, it’s common for healthcare organizations to underutilize these powerful tools, often due to operational, training, and integration challenges. How can you know if you’re getting the most from your investment?

Read on as we delve into the telltale signs that your organization may not fully harness the potential of your EHR, HIS, or PM systems. Plus, we offer proactive steps to address the underlying issues, optimize your technological investment, and propel your healthcare delivery to new heights.

#1: Your Staff Relies on the Payer Portal for Critical Information

If your staff uses payer portals for information like eligibility, authorization, or claim status, you’re likely not maximizing your tech investments. A reliance on payer portals suggests that your organization has issues such as incomplete or inaccurate data within your system, which can lead to errors and delays in patient care.

The need to switch between systems disrupts workflows, leading to inefficiency. It also signals a lack of integration capabilities in your existing software, which should ideally synch with payer portals for smooth operations.

When it comes to finding critical information, your EHR needs to be your source of truth to improve efficiency and make the most of your technology. If it’s not, consider system updates, further integrations, or even a shift to more suitable systems.

#2: Leadership Struggles to Identify Bottlenecks

Leadership can’t fix what they can’t see. Limited visibility can lead to cash slowdowns, making finding solutions to get collections moving challenging. If you struggle to find bottlenecks or slowdowns in your workflows, it’s a strong indicator that your organization isn’t fully leveraging its investments in its technology.

Bottlenecks in healthcare mean delays in billing, claim submissions, or receipt of payments. This lack of insight can impact your organizational financial health. Plus, it makes it challenging to implement process improvements or strategically plan for growth.

If you’re unsure where your bottlenecks lie, you must evaluate and improve your use of your EHR, HIS, or PM systems. This should involve using more sophisticated analytics, improving system integrations, or providing further training to staff on utilizing these tools effectively. Your goal should be to understand all operations better, allowing you to identify slowdowns and create strategies to streamline workflows and enhance revenue collections.

#3: Denials are Too High

Rising denials are an issue across the healthcare industry. Reports show that insurance companies deny 17% of claims on average. However, if your denials are getting too high, you’re likely not getting enough from your tech investments. You’re likely missing vital information in your workflow and critical help checking claims before submitting them to insurers.

Addressing high denials often requires a comprehensive understanding of your organization’s workflows and improving areas like data management, staff training, and system integration. Leveraging a more effective solution can also help in better claim management, error reduction, and, ultimately, decrease denial rates, leading to improved financial performance.

#4: You Struggle to Stay on Top of EOBs, Paper Claims, and Physical Attachments

Difficulty managing Explanation of Benefits (EOBs), paper claims, and physical attachments is another telling sign that your organization is not effectively leveraging its EHR, HIS, or PM systems. Struggling with these documents often points to inefficiencies in data management, potential bottlenecks, and increased risk of errors, all of which negatively impact revenue cycle management (RCM) and overall financial performance.

This situation may be indicative of a few underlying issues. For instance, the organization might be dealing with outdated or fragmented systems that cannot efficiently manage and process these documents. It might also suggest that your systems are not adequately integrated with payer portals or don’t offer robust document management features.

To resolve this problem, consider incorporating more advanced document management and data processing capabilities. That way, you can streamline workflows, reduce errors, and improve critical document management, which enhances overall operational efficiency.

#5: Outdated Patient Engagement Processes Are Holding You Back

Patient engagement is more than just discussions during their appointment. It involves all interactions and communications, including appointment scheduling, reminders, billing, and health education. Outdated processes lead to inefficiencies, patient satisfaction, missed appointments, and even impact treatment outcomes. They also directly impact revenue when follow-up processes are inefficient.

Dates and inadequate systems often lack modern engagement tools patients expect today, like online portals, mobile apps, or automated reminders. Plus, a lack of system integration makes sharing and accessing patient information challenging.

You need more than just a payment processing system to address this issue. Financial engagement technology will help you provide a better patient experience while increasing payments. Recent research shows that of those who adopt financial engagement technology, 64% saw an increase in collections, 55% reduced costs, and 27% had reduced A/R days. Plus, 18% said their patient satisfaction increased following implementation.

#6: Inaccurate Cost Estimates Are Breeding Mistrust

Accurate cost estimates are crucial for building trust with providers and patients. Cost estimates aid providers in budgeting, strategic planning, and service pricing and help patients make informed care decisions and manage financial expectations. Inaccuracies in these estimates lead to dissatisfaction, mistrust, and even financial losses.

These inaccuracies might stem from outdated or insufficient systems that lack real-time data integration, predictive analytics, or sophisticated pricing tools. It could also be due to inadequate staff training or the absence of streamlined workflows for calculating and communicating cost estimates.

To address this issue, consider updating your system to integrate more advanced features that enhance data management, predictive modeling, and cost estimation. Also, ensure that your staff is adequately trained on your solutions and revise any necessary workflows to improve accuracy in cost estimates. By doing so, your organization can increase transparency, foster trust, and enhance the decision-making process for both providers and patients.

#7: Your Staff Relies on Manual Cash Posting Processes

Cash posting is a critical component of revenue cycle management. A manual approach to this process is time-consuming, error-prone, and inefficient, leading to financial record discrepancies, delays in account reconciliation, and potential revenue leakage.

If your staff is over-relying on manual processes, it’s likely due to an outdated or inadequate system that lacks automated capabilities or integration with banking and payment systems.

To solve this issue, consider implementing or enhancing automation in your EHR, HIS, or PM system, particularly regarding cash posting processes, including tools like automatic payment reconciliation, batch processing, and real-time updates. With these changes, you can increase cash posting accuracy, efficiency, and speed, leading to improved financial management.

Get More from Your Investment, Partner With GeBBS Healthcare Solutions 

If you’re facing these challenges in your organization today, consider upgrading your EHR, HIS, or PM system to include more modern, patient-centric features. By embracing a more tech-savvy approach to your workflows and patient engagement, you can improve the patient experience, boost productivity, and ultimately enhance healthcare delivery.

If you’re struggling to get the most from your system investments, we’re here to help. Leveraging the comprehensive suite of services from GeBBS Healthcare Solutions can be a game-changer. Our advanced revenue cycle management, health information management, and patient engagement tools and solutions can help streamline workflows and enhance data accuracy. Reach out to us today at gebbs.com to learn more about how GeBBS can help you gain the most from your healthcare technology investments.

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