“A hammer is a tool…the carpenter determines its usage.”
The pure truth of that statement applies in principle to answering - what is the purpose of practice management software?
Of course, whatever software platform you choose is merely a tool. But how you maximize it can increase production, sharpen team productivity, and deepen your patient relationships.
But first things first…
What is Practice Management?
The day to day routine of patient care relies on some form of a practice management system. You not only treat patients there’s also the details associated with dentistry or medical practice management such as:
- Accessing and searching patient records
- Office staff roles and staff member productivity
- Tracking patient visits including their electronic health records
Generally speaking, practice management is the overall system that guides dentists, physicians, and their office personnel to manage the day to day, real-time tasks of patient care.
This also practically applies to you as a dentist. And the even more practical level of practice management would include systemization at the tool level, such as software.
What is Practice Management Software?
The day to day operations of your dental practice cannot be disorganized or left to chance. Patient visits require practice management systems for small, medium-sized, and especially large clinics.
You use practice management software to streamline major tasks in your organization. For example, it saves time when checking on patients’ insurance eligibility and scheduling appointments. It reduces the effort involved in managing denied claims and in generating reports for staff meetings. Once installed, you’ll wonder how you ever got by, managing your practice without it.
Medical practice management software and it’s application to dentistry is designed to cover the details of managing patient data including:
- ICD-10 code requirements (more on this in a moment)
- Electronic health records and the filing of electronic claims
- Insurance coverage and the necessary communication with insurance payers
- Generating reports that track marketing initiatives, treatment production, and account receivables
There’s no limit to the benefits when you select, use, and maximize practice management software.
Speaking of benefits…
What Are the Benefits of Practice Management Software?
The fundamental benefits to a dental or medical practice are in the applications of the particular software being used. Your office manager has a key role in unpacking the benefits and applying it to your unique patient demographics.
You will treat patients more efficiently when you implement a practice management system that’s aligned with your chosen software platform. Updating patient information, processing electronic claims and insurance claims, and filing and securing electronic health records are core benefits.
What Are the Benefits of Practice Management Software for Clinics?
Dental and medical clinics have their unique preferences for maximizing practice management software. Patient demographics and the pace you follow to schedule patient appointments and treat patients will determine your approach.
Practice management systems are vital for increasing and monitoring your revenue cycle including payment on insurance claims. How else can you accomplish this without fully utilizing the functions of medical practice management software for your dental clinic?
The 5 Main Features of a Great Practice Management Platform
1. Managing Denied Claims and Submitting Electronic Claims
Revenue cycles gain momentum when you utilize electronic claim management and submission systems. Errors are more easily detected along with the ability to track denied claims.
2. General Practice Management and Financial Reporting Procedures
Data access and tracking enables your practice to stay focused on production growth. The high “altitude” perspectives combined with the more granular detail provided by a software platform can reveal gaps in patient scheduling, daily collections, and insurance reimbursements.
3. Patient Scheduling
Related generic software packages can lack key features required by today’s patient relationships. Software designed for medical and dental clinics is customized to enhance patient scheduling and staff efficiency.
4. ICD-10 Code Conversion
The International Classification of Diseases code base (ICD-10) can increase the likelihood of errors when submitting codes to insurance providers. Practice management software with a built-in tool makes code searching easier and increases accuracy to expedite claim payments.
5. Insurance Eligibility Verification
Time invested on-hold with an insurance provider reduces team efficiency. Practice management software platforms can provide time-saving, real-time insurance status checks. This provides patient advocacy with insurance companies and improves patient relationships by maximizing their time and their insurance benefits.
How Can Practice Management Software Help Your Practice?
Save time accessing and searching electronic health records
The online environment of practice management software gives you fast, clickable access to patient data and related individual documents.
Reduced paperwork provides your practice faster access to patient records. This promotes quicker processing of payments on claims.
Less reporting errors
Integration with billing and insurance procedures allows for consistent updating of patient data. Your dental practice’s costly mistakes can be more easily spotted and corrected.
Improved staff efficiency
Time is saved accomplishing day to day operational details in your practice. Documentation and charting tasks can be streamlined to improve staff workflows across all your practice’s departments.
How to Choose a Practice Management Software
Hopefully, you’ve increased your understanding and answered the question - what is the purpose of practice management software? The right software will no doubt increase your staff’s efficiency, workflows, and the vital connection with patients.
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