e-MDs® Tips: Note or Alert, Which Is It?
So you’re opening a patient in e-MDs®. You type in the last name and first name to add them to the schedule for the day. When suddenly, BAM!!! Something pops up in your face that is either very useful or frustrating: The Note Function in e-MDs. From the demographics screen, the 9th tab from the left says “Note”. Once you click on the tab, the wording above the note space says, “Note appears as warning alert in:” Hmmm… that’s interesting. So is it a note or is it an alert? Let us help you navigate this conundrum and tell you Solor’s best practice for the use of this wonderful feature.
In a nutshell, NOTES are for information. ALERTS are for action.
When putting in a note as an alert (we’re going to call this an alert moving forward) into the system, there HAS to be an action TO BE TAKEN associated with it. Examples could be:
- To collect a balance due at the next visit
- To call patient to tell them that their lab results are abnormal
- To have the patient fill out additional paperwork
There are hundreds of actions that can be taken. Simply make sure that whoever creates the alert indicates the action that needs to happen. Our preferred format is below:
Date, Action to be taken, and initials of the person that created the alert.
After you have added this information, you’ll need to determine which boxes to check so that you can decide in which module this alert will pop up. If it’s simply to collect their insurance card, then you might want to only check Schedule. If it’s patient balance related, you might select both Bill & Schedule. This is all practice workflow related.
***KEY POINT: Once the action has been taken…. remove the alert. This means hitting the “clear note” button or simply deleting the text from the box and then unchecking the boxes. Whoever performed the action should be the one that removes the information, unchecks the boxes, and hits save. If you erase the information but don’t uncheck the boxes, a blank alert will continue to pop up. Raise your hand if that’s happened to you before. Didn’t raise your hand, raise it if you’ve seen an alert with information that’s greater than 2 years old? Bet a bunch of you have your hands up now!
So we have determined that alerts are for actions, not information. So what are some examples of things that SHOULDN’T go in an alert? Here are some of the things we have seen in our new clients’ practices throughout the years.
- Patient sent to ER on 2/10/07 (this note was still in place 3 years after the fact)
- What am I supposed to do with that information? This should be a log note in the patient’s chart, yes?
- Patient no longer taking Lipitor
- Awesome! Why is that here and not in the chart under updated medications? Where’s the date? Who gave us this information?
- Here’s one we saw recently:
- Seriously? From 2008? Get that OUTTA HERE!!!
Examples like the one above are why some practices cannot stand the alert feature. I can see why. However, when this feature is used correctly, it becomes a powerful tool in your arsenal that will boost collections and increase efficiency. Let us know if we can be of assistance to your practice by filling out the form below.
Solor is a specialized third party medical billing company for e-MDs® Practices. e-MDs® is a registered trademark of e-MDs Inc. e-MDs Inc. is not affiliated with Solor, Inc., our products, services, or website.