- Must allow clients to electronically sign paperwork. If I have to keep a separate physical file, or do scanning for everyone who walks into the office- we have a problem ;0) Why? Because scanning, sorting, uploading, labeling, etc. takes a lot of time.
- It must allow clients to complete paperwork/questionnaires online that I can customize. This allows me to develop my intake paperwork online. In a perfect world- clients would complete their basic information and it would auto-fill CMS-1500 forms and other information.
- It needs to be secure... I almost forgot to say this because it should be obvious lol... HIPAA compliant, secure, backed up, secure! This means a program that is encrypted, among other things.
- It needs to securely store client's credit card information so I can bill them at the start or close of the session. This feature not only leaves more time in session for work- but it allows me to easily bill for late cancellations or no shows and sets a very clear boundary. (This feature alone more than pays for the other features). While Square and other programs are quite handy- I have found the auto-billing a feature that both the client and I appreciate- it saves us BOTH time!
- Ability to easily print up CMS-1500 with no extra work from me- it needs to all come together in such a way that when I enter treatment plan, diagnosis, etc. in the records I never have to re-enter that information.
- I need to be able to securely access this data from my smartphone, laptop, etc.
- It needs to leave no, or next to no data on my laptop/smartphone so I am not storing things on my computer if it ever crashed (died) or was stolen.
Optional- but nice:
- Automated reminders for clients (clients love this).
- Room scheduling.
- Ability to have a front office staff person who can schedule without getting into progress notes and such.
- Clients can upload and download files.
I was lucky enough to find a program that has all of the above. Actually, it was partially luck, and partially more than luck- ask me to tell you the story sometime! I have all of the above and LOVE it! Here is what I wish the program I am using had:
- I wish the document/questionnaire maker was easier to work with. It can be a little finicky at times- so I don't find myself making new forms very often ;0)
- I wish it looked a little prettier-more modern.
- I wish it had a secure messaging system attached to it where clients and I could exchange more secure communication that was automatically added to the client's records.
- A secure way to integrate/sync with my regular calendar system- I know this is tricky to do securely.
What about you? What are your requirements for a great practice management system? What could make your business easier to run? Or make your clients feel really taken care of?