Wednesday, 04 May 2016

Managing a Behavioral Healthcare Practice with Multiple Locations

driessenHRM backgroud

Healthcare practices that operate more than one site can usually offer patients more convenient locations and a broader array of programs and practitioners. Your bottom line can also improve through economies of scale and better visibility within a community.

But managing multiple sites can be challenging because it’s harder to maintain those qualities that made you successful – responsiveness to patients' needs, consistent and accurate record-keeping, clear inter-staff communications, and efficient revenue management. The larger and more spread out your agency becomes, the more you risk losing control over how you and your staff operate. Sometimes agencies get so overwhelmed sustaining logical and manageable workflows that quality of care and staff retention suffer.

 

The trials of handling multiple locations are especially daunting for those of us who run behavioral healthcare agencies. The overwhelming and ever-changing requirements for record keeping as well as the complexities of billing for mental health services necessitate a laser focus on maintaining clear accountability and communications. But that sort of tight management means integrating the efforts of multiple providers, supervisors, compliance personnel, front-end staff, and billers.

Sophisticated clinic management software can provide technology that lessens the risks inherent in running a practice across multiple locations. Systems that put a premium on facilitating communication and automating accountability are critically important. The more the software makes staff feel as if they're working in the same building, the greater the likelihood of successful collaborations.

We have always wanted ClinicTracker to be more than just an EHR. We designed it to be the common pathway for everything that happens in an agency, regardless of its size or the number of buildings involved. Our goal has been to provide users all the tools they need to work together efficiently in helping patients. If an administrator had an announcement for the entire staff, we wanted to make that happen easily. If a trainee needed a supervisor to sign some paperwork, we wanted that process to take place with a click of the button. If the secretary wanted to chat with someone in compliance, we wanted him or her to communicate securely through our own messaging system. We engineered ClinicTracker to make all these things happen, regardless of how the agency was configured by way of locations, staff size, or types of programming.

As an example, ClinicChat allows staff to communicate in real time. The secure, internal protocol is like instant messaging, but is even more protected. You can view who is available, so you won't waste time contacting someone who's busy. Administrators also can send system-wide messages.

ClinicTracker's signature routing system allows you to track signature requests within the message board. The paperless system is secure and efficient, and it meets regulatory standards.

As for billing, we know that many insurers and state regulators require information about where services were provided. BillingTracker can handle Place of Service codes required for school- and community-based services. Since our intuitive software is customizable, you can configure NPIs based on place of service or specify to bill under a central NPI. You can even configure billing override rules based on place of service, insurer, or program.

ClinicTracker has a feature that’s especially important for larger agencies with multiple locations: chart segmentation. On the one hand, you want all your data in a central location so you can access anything and everything at all times. But that doesn’t mean you want everyone in the agency to have that level of access. For instance, you might want the staff in your child mental health clinic to see only patient data from that service. Or perhaps you’d like to limit the access administrative staff have to certain patient notes. In other words, you need chart segmentation so that you can control who sees what data in your system. Very few software solutions provide that capability.

No matter the size of your practice, ClinicTracker is committed to communication and collaboration, even when you're managing programs and staff across multiple sites.

About ClinicTracker

ClinicTracker is a robust, future-proof mental health and substance abuse EHR. Dr. Michael Gordon, a renowned clinical psychologist, and Joshua Gordon, an award-winning software engineer, founded the company in 2000. ClinicTracker EHR’s powerful software empowers your agency to succeed. ClinicTracker will automate all of your clinic routines, boost staff productivity, increase billing efficiency, and provide the tools you need to manage your clinic effectively. While mental health and substance abuse agencies are the most common group of users, foster care agencies, social services, equine assisted therapy programs, university clinics, academic counseling systems, family counseling services, and eating disorder clinics also take advantage of our powerful software.

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