How much does YOUR EMR Cost? I get this question ever so often. I'm not bothered by this question, but I worry.
I worry for the person that asks this question, because the person asking this question is usually the Provider, Physician, Doctor. He/She is usually the owner of a small practice - the quintessential 'Small Business' that drives the US Economy. This is typically the class that watches the bottom line so carefully.
But I wonder - do they really watch the bottom line?
Bottom line is falsely attributed to costs. In a Medical Practice revenue is very complicated. Ask any biller. The Revenue is based on so many variable factors:
- Proper Coding
- Reimbursement levels set by CMS
- Number of Patients seen per day/week/month
- Growth of new patients
- Number of 'no shows' - i.e. patients setting up appointments and not turning up, resulting in loss of revenue
- Non payment of patient responsibility, which is under tremendous pressure.
- Patients returning for exams, tests, procedures done.
- And then, there are those soft/quality variables that are linked to
- Provider and Staff's 'Likeability'
- Patient Referrals
- Perception of 'modern' practice
- (believe it or not) Patient's perception that Practice is in the modern age of technology, connectedness, internet and email
Cost is extremely important, but you all know how important it is to have good staff that cares - whether it is Front Desk personnel, medical assistants and back office staff. In fact, front office personnel can make or break a practice.
Would you compromise a few Dollars to get someone that wants the lowest salary? I know you wouldn't.
Yet, why do people shop for the lowest cost EMR? The reason is very simple.
The Perception that all EMR are equal.
If you have liked something that you believe will be good for your practice, then would you compromise a cost variable that is less than 1% of your revenue?