The Best Physical Therapy EMR Software of 2023: A Comprehensive Review
What makes a system “The Best Physical Therapy EMR”? Is it Documentation? Compliance? What about billing?
“A software that lets you focus on what matters most, providing high-quality care to your patients”
How often have you heard that played-out line? Just to find out it was all a lie!
Historically, every physical therapy EMR software claims “more time with patients” and “speedy documentation” but few rarely deliver on the promise.
Inefficient and clunky EMR software has plagued the physical therapy industry for years, causing a cascade of problems that negatively impact business operations, staff morale, and ultimately, revenue!
With reimbursement rates in decline, PT businesses must be more efficient and productive than ever if they hope to maintain a healthy profit margin. For practices that want to THRIVE, not just survive in 2023, we break down what makes the Best Physical Therapy EMR Software.
Key Features of The Best Physical Therapy EMR Software
Integrated Billing and Collections
Integrated billing is a crucial feature for any physical therapy EMR software. It allows clinics to streamline their revenue cycle and ultimately increase revenue.
Without integrated billing, clinics had to rely on separate software or systems to manage their billing processes. If you have ever uploaded a list of claims to another system, this is a red flag. This often resulted in redundant data entry, uploading files, and increased risk of errors. Moreover, this type of disjointed approach often results in a more labor-intensive and error-prone process.
Integrated billing solves these issues by allowing clinics to manage their claims and collections in a unified system. This means that all charges, balances, and payments are in one database. This can decrease the time in A/R and increase the amount of patient responsibility collected.
By using an physical therapy EMR system with integrated billing, clinics can streamline their billing processes, reduce errors, and improve their revenue cycle management. This can result in faster payment processing and improved cash flow, which can help clinics to better manage their finances and invest in their business growth.
Insurance Eligibility and Benefits Checks
The most common denial reason is due to eligibility issues—meaning that the beneficiary wasn’t eligible for insurance coverage at the time you provided the servicesIt's frustrating, isn't it? Well, one of the main reasons this happens is because of insurance eligibility.
Now, when it comes to eligibility, there are a lot of terms thrown around, like verification of benefits, coverage, eligibility checks, and more. But really, they all mean the same thing. Essentially, what we're looking for is to confirm whether or not the patient is eligible and covered by their insurance plan.
It's important to remember that just because a patient presents an insurance ID card, it doesn't necessarily mean they have the necessary benefits. As healthcare providers, it's our responsibility to verify a patient's current enrollment status and benefits details before providing any care.
But here's where it gets a little more complicated: Verification of Benefits (VOB) is where we can really dig deep and find out exactly what's covered by the patient's insurance plan. This helps us determine which specific services and benefits we can provide to the patient that will be covered by their plan. However, it's important to note that benefits can vary from plan to plan, so it's crucial to verify that a service is actually a covered benefit before providing it to the patient.
By having an integrated billing and eligibility system like PatientStudio, you can easily verify a patient's eligibility and benefits with just a few clicks. This not only saves you time, but it also ensures that you're providing the right services to your patients and avoiding any claim denials due to eligibility issues.
PT’s looking to thrive need an EMR software that provides you with the best scheduling tools. To be the best physical therapy EMR software, you can easily schedule appointments, manage cancellations, and even reschedule appointments with just a few clicks.
It's essential to have an intuitive scheduling system within your physical therapy EMR software because it helps your clinic run smoothly. An easy-to-use scheduling system can help you avoid double bookings, appointment conflicts, and missed appointments, ensuring that you can provide the best care for your patients.
A modern physical therapy EMR software can help you maximize your practice's efficiency by automating appointment reminders and confirming appointments with patients via email or text. This feature can save you valuable time and resources, as you won't have to manually call or email each patient to remind them of their appointment.
But scheduling isn't just about avoiding missed appointments or double bookings. It's also about creating a better patient experience. With modern physical therapy EMR, like PatientStudio, patients can book appointments online, from the comfort of their own homes, and receive automated reminders before their appointments. This not only reduces no-shows but also improves patient satisfaction.
Customizable Intake Forms
Online patient forms are becoming the standard in physical therapy. Choosing the best physical therapy EMR software with integrated online forms technology is crucial for your practice's success.
Online patient forms are HIPAA compliant, mobile-responsive, and should be fully customizable to fit your office's unique needs. The ability to customize patient intake forms and make them specific to your practice is crucial to increasing efficiency and reducing manual data entry.
The best physical therapy EMR software should leverage digital patient intake to streamline the office workflow and increase efficiency. Patient data will be automatically synced with all other applications, including scheduling systems, clinical notes, and billing software, saving your staff precious time and reducing the likelihood of errors.
When patients complete an integrated intake form, certain fields (like date of injury, medical conditions, pain location and type, current medications, and therapy goals, to name a few) will automatically populate in the patient’s initial evaluation. Patients appreciate the convenience and ease of use, while staff members can spend more time building relationships with patients and less time on monotonous paperwork.
Fast, Defensible Physical Therapy Documentation
In the current high volume climate of physical therapy, time is always of the essence. The more time you spend on documentation, the less time you have to focus on delivering care to your patients. Time is literally money. This is where the best physical therapy EMR software can be a game changer, offering fast, defensible documentation that saves you time and helps ensure you get paid for the services you provide.
So, what makes documentation defensible?
Describing the patient’s medical history and diagnosis, and using your findings to communicate the necessity of your care
Observing and documenting your patient’s responses to treatment
Using action words to describe your treatment and the patient’s goals
Producing legible documentation
Incorporating standardized tests and measurements
Speed is critical when it comes to documentation. Ways to speed up documentation:
Building and using custom patient profiles- By creating profiles for the types of patients you typically treat, you can streamline your documentation process and reduce errors.
Creating templated activities and interventions - Templated activities and interventions can be connected to specific CPT codes, helping you bill for services accurately and remain compliant.
Use shortcuts - save you time by automatically pulling in patient demographics, past medical history, and past surgical history
To be crowned The Best Physical Therapy EMR, you must have Fast, defensible documentation. Why defensible PT documentation matters:
It helps you communicate with other providers about the patient’s care and treatment outcomes.
Compliance with regulations set by local, state, federal, and payer authorities. (Make sure claims are paid in case of an audit of documentation request.)
Documentation with standardized measures and test can be used to demonstrate outcomes, which can help when negotiating reimbursements rates in payer contacts
As a physical therapy business owner, it's important to have a clear understanding of your practice's financial health in order to make informed decisions and plan for future growth. This is where reporting comes in, and why it's essential to have a modern physical therapy EMR software that provides you with the necessary metrics and KPIs. Here are some of the most important metrics to keep an eye on:
Cost per Visit: This metric provides a rough estimate of how much it costs to treat each patient. It's important to account for every expense that goes into treating patients and keeping your doors open, including payroll, benefits, equipment and supplies, electricity, insurance, and technology systems.
Profit per Month: Measuring your profits and losses on a monthly basis is critical to monitoring your practice's financial health and gaining a clearer picture of its growth trajectory overall.
Revenue per Visit: This metric helps you understand how much money your clinic earns from each patient visit, which can be useful in determining other important benchmarks.
Business Operations Metrics
Vacancy Rate: This KPI measures the percentage of open, unscheduled time on your therapists' schedules that should be dedicated to patient appointments. A high vacancy rate generally indicates lost productivity.
Cancellation and No-Show Rate: Patient cancellations and no-shows can have a major impact on your therapist's daily productivity, your clinic volume and overall revenue, and your clinic's footprint and future growth. Implementing a 24-hour cancellation or no-show fee can help reduce this overall percentage.
Percentage of Receivables Over 120 Days: This KPI measures the timeliness of your collection processes. Ideally, you want your clinic's receivables to process in fewer than 120 days.
Daily Sales Outstanding (DSO): This useful collection metric measures the average amount of time it takes for you to collect payment from an insurance carrier or patient. You should aim for a benchmark of fewer than 35 days.
Net Collection Rate: This represents the effectiveness of your practice's collection processes and how often you make adjustments or write off patient balances. Your goal should be to keep your rate between 50% and 60% each month.
Denial and Rejection Rates: Your practice's denial and rejection rates represent the percentage of claims that your payers either reject or deny. Your target denial and rejection rate should fall below 10%.
By keeping an eye on these metrics and KPIs, you'll be better equipped to make informed decisions about your practice's financial health and future growth. To be considered The Best EMR for Physical Therapy it is essential that you can easily access and track these metrics.
Attributes of The Best Physical Therapy EMR Software
Physical Therapy Specific
As a Physical Therapy business owner, you know the importance of providing the best possible care to your patients. The Best Physical Therapy Electronic Medical Record (EMR) software Should be tailored specifically to the needs of Physical Therapy. This is particularly important when it comes to documentation and note-taking.
A Physical Therapy EMR should include PT-specific measures, interventions, and note templates. This not only streamlines the documentation process for therapists but also enables them to spend more time treating patients. With a tailored PT EMR, therapists can quickly and easily record patient progress and create comprehensive treatment plans. This results in more efficient workflows, better patient outcomes, and increased revenue for your business.
Using a general EMR that's not specifically designed for Physical Therapy can result in wasted time and reduced productivity. Therapists may spend too much time navigating through irrelevant templates and measures, ultimately resulting in less time treating patients. This can lead to missed opportunities to document progress, update treatment plans, and ultimately impact patient care.
A PT-specific EMR software also provides benefits in other areas such as billing, scheduling, and analytics. It should include features such as PT-specific billing codes, modifiers and fee schedules. This can save time and effort when managing financial and administrative tasks.
Improved Patient Engagement
One of the most critical components of any successful physical therapy practice is patient engagement. By keeping patients informed, involved, and empowered throughout their care journeys, you can help build stronger relationships with them and ultimately help them achieve better outcomes. That's why the best physical therapy EMR software should offer a suite of modern patient engagement tools, including online scheduling, digital patient intake forms, and online payments/invoices.
Online scheduling is a must-have feature for any physical therapy EMR software. With the ability to schedule appointments online, patients can easily book and manage their appointments without having to call your clinic or leave a message. This not only saves them time, but it also reduces the administrative burden on your staff, allowing them to focus on more important tasks.
Online Patient Forms
Digital patient intake forms are another essential feature that should be included in the best physical therapy EMR software. With digital intake forms, patients can fill out all of their necessary information online prior to their appointment, saving them time and hassle during their visit. Plus, with electronic forms, you can easily capture and store patient data in a secure, HIPAA-compliant manner, streamlining your workflows and minimizing errors.
Online payments/invoices is a key feature that the best physical therapy EMR software should offer. With online payments, patients can easily pay their bills and invoices online, without having to mail in a check or visit your clinic in person. This not only improves the patient experience, but it also helps you get paid faster and more efficiently, reducing the administrative burden on your staff and improving your overall revenue cycle.
Patient engagement is critical to the success of any physical therapy practice. Online scheduling, digital patient intake forms, and online payments/invoices are three essential features that should be included in any top-tier physical therapy EMR software, enabling you to better engage with your patients, streamline your workflows, and ultimately deliver better care.
The documentation process can be one of the most time-consuming tasks for physical therapists. It's essential to have an EMR software that streamlines the documentation process, making it more efficient and user-friendly.
The best physical therapy EMR software should have a user-friendly interface that allows physical therapists to quickly and easily document patient care. It should offer customizable templates and workflows that enable providers to document the exact care they provide, without spending hours typing out notes.
The best physical therapy EMR software should have automated features that pre-populate fields and make documentation faster and more accurate. For example, software that can pull patient information from previous visits or populate patient data from intake forms can save time for providers and reduce the likelihood of errors.
Enhanced Revenue Cycle Management
Implementing the best physical therapy EMR software can have a significant impact on your revenue cycle management. By using an EMR that is specifically designed for physical therapy practices, you can streamline your billing processes, reduce errors, and ultimately increase your net collections.
One of the biggest benefits of using a physical therapy EMR software is the reduction in claim denials. With built-in claim scrubbing features, the software can automatically check claims for errors or missing information before they are submitted to payers. This reduces the likelihood of denied claims and ensures that your practice receives payment in a timely manner.
A high-quality EMR software can help your practice get paid faster by reducing the time spent in accounts receivable. With real-time eligibility verification and automatic claim submission, you can speed up the time it takes to be reimbursed.
Provide KPIs and Business Insights
The best physical therapy EMR software should have robust reporting and analytics capabilities. By analyzing data, PTs can make informed decisions about their practice and identify areas for improvement.
With reporting and analytics, PTs can track key performance indicators like patient outcomes, referral sources, revenue, and more. This information can help PTs identify which services are most profitable, which marketing strategies are working, and which areas of the practice need improvement.
By leveraging data analytics, PTs can make data-driven decisions that improve the efficiency and profitability of their practice. This can ultimately lead to better patient outcomes and a more successful business.
How PatientStudio Stands Out from Competitors
Let's face it, most EMR software out there are about as user-friendly as a cactus. They're clunky, confusing, and seem like they were designed in the 90’s by someone who's never even used a computer before. It's no wonder that employees are frustrated and burnt out by EMRs. 75% of employees attributed some or most of their burn out to EHR use.
At PatientStudio, we've taken the time to design an interface that's so user-friendly, you'll feel like you're using your favorite app, not a windows program from 1992. Our team has worked tirelessly to make sure that everything from the user experience is easy and intuitive.
And the best part? You won't need a degree in computer science to figure it out. Even your grandma who still uses a flip phone can navigate our interface like a pro. That's right, we've made it so simple that even the technologically challenged won't break a sweat.
Advanced Customization Options
At PatientStudio, we know that no two physical therapy practices are exactly the same. That's why we offer a range of customization options to make sure that our software fits your practice like a glove. Whether you are a solo provider or a multi-state enterprise, we've got you covered.
Say goodbye to stacks of paperwork and tedious data entry! PatientStudio's customizable online patient forms make it easy to collect all the information you need from your patients before their visit. No more deciphering messy handwriting or dealing with incomplete forms. You can customize the forms to capture all the necessary demographics, payment, and insurance information, as well as details on the patient's primary complaints and pain scales.
And the best part? No data entry. No scanning forms. No printing paper. It's like having a virtual assistant that never takes a day off! Trust us, your hands will thank you for ditching the clipboard and pen.
Our scheduling system is also highly customizable, allowing you to create appointment types that are specific to your practice. Want to offer group therapy sessions or offer online scheduling? No problem. With PatientStudio, you can configure your schedule to make the most of your available resources and keep your patients happy.
Let’s talk about documentation and notes! Our software is designed to be flexible and adaptable, so you can create notes that fit your documentation needs and your therapist's workflow. We'll work with you to develop templates that are compliant with industry and CMS standards to optimize your therapist's time.
In short, PatientStudio offers a level of customization that is unmatched by our competitors. We believe that the best physical therapy EMR software should be tailored to your practice's unique needs, and that's exactly what we deliver.
Responsive Customer Support Team
At PatientStudio, we believe in providing top-notch support to our customers. You're not just a number to us, you're part of the PatientStudio family. That's why we offer two levels of support to meet your needs.
1) Helpline support is always available to help you troubleshoot any problems you may encounter. And we don't just limit you to one channel, you can reach us via phone, email, or chat.
2) Our account management team provides managed services to help optimize your use of the software, boost productivity and revenue. Think of them as your personal PT clinic improvement resource, working with you one-on-one to ensure your success.
At PatientStudio, we're committed to your success and our support reflects that.
Tired of hunting down insurance companies for reimbursement? Let's face it, billing and collections can be a huge pain in the you-know-where. That's why PatientStudio is here to save the day with our outsourced billing services.
Say goodbye to the headache of managing your own medical billing and hello to faster revenue cycles, fewer denials and increased collections. Our team of billing experts will handle everything from claims submission to following up with insurance companies and patients. And the best part? You can focus on what you do best, helping patients, while we take care of the rest. It's like having your own personal billing superhero, but without the cape (unless you really want one).
There is a massive benefit to having your EMR software provider and your billing services all from one place! You know that feeling when you go to a party and you don't know anyone there? It's awkward, uncomfortable and you just want to leave. Well, it's kind of the same feeling when you have to work with a third-party billing company. You don't really know them, and they don't really know you, your practice or your patients.
But with PatientStudio, you don't have to worry about that. When you use our EMR software and billing services, it's like having your best friend take care of everything for you. We already know all about your practice, your patients, and your revenue cycle management needs. So when it comes to billing, we're on the same page and can work more efficiently and effectively.
Plus, when you have one company providing both services, you don't have to deal with the headache of trying to coordinate between two separate entities. There's no finger-pointing or blame-shifting, just seamless integration between your EMR and billing processes.
If you're looking for the best physical therapy EMR software, you need to consider several factors. A fast, defensible documentation that saves time and ensures you get paid for the services you provide. Other key features include integrated billing and collections, insurance eligibility and benefits, and intuitive scheduling.
An EMR software with these features will help you streamline billing processes, reduce errors, and improve revenue cycle management, leading to faster payment processing and improved cash flow.
With reimbursement rates in decline, physical therapy practices need to be efficient and productive to maintain a healthy profit margin. To see for yourself how PatientStudio can help you optimize your physical therapy practice, schedule a free 1:1 demo today!