Proper training is an essential component of electronic health record (EHR) implementation. With the majority of healthcare providers in the country using EHR systems – almost 86% of office-based physicians in the United States – it is more important than ever that practitioners receive EHR training prior to implementation.
When it comes to something as important as patient care, training staff for EHR implementation is a necessary investment – and will undoubtedly benefit your practice over the long-term.
Electronic health record software can be quite complex. Without proper EHR software training, your staff members won’t know how to harness the system’s full capabilities. Worse, they might not even know how to use the system at all, resulting in errors and inefficiencies.
In health care, there’s no room for wasted time or mistakes. Here are a few reasons behind the importance of training in EHR implementation.
Fast and Seamless Transition to the New EHR System
Medical issues aren’t going to take a break while you implement new EHR software. You and your team need to be able to make a seamless transition to the new system.
To ensure the EHR implementation process goes smoothly, train your administrative staff before the software goes live. That way, they’ll be able to keep up with important admin tasks without missing a beat, including filling out:
- Patient records
If your staff completes EHR software training, they can keep up with your patient load during the transition.
Learning anything involves making mistakes. When it comes to your patients’ medical care, errors can be dangerous. Let your staff make their mistakes in training, so there won’t be any issues when the system goes live. With proper training for EHR implementation, you can avoid common mistakes, such as:
- Double booking appointments
- Duplicate orders and tests
- Working off outdated information
Training before EHR implementation will reduce errors to keep patients safe and will enhance practice efficiency. The fewer mistakes you make, the less time you have to spend fixing them.
Better Patient Care
Ultimately, EHR software is designed to improve patient care. If your staff doesn’t know how to use the new technology, your patients will suffer. Provide effective EHR training before implementation to give your patients the care they deserve. This training can help with the following:
- Shorter wait times with more efficient processes
- Simplified scheduling
- More access to information
- Ongoing communication with healthcare providers
The more highly trained and experienced your staff is with the new EHR software, the better patient care they’ll be able to provide.
Training Strategies for Health Information Systems and EHR
Ineffective training has the same effect as no training. So, how do you create an EHR training program that’s effective? Here are a few strategies to help you improve user training for a seamless transition to an EHR platform.
Create an EHR Training Plan
The best way to ensure your staff knows how to use new software is to create a training plan for EHR implementation. Create a list of long and short-term goals.
Goals need to be three things:
- Have a deadline
They can’t just be “full EHR competence” because that’s impossible to measure. Stick with tangible goals like, “all users can log into the system within a week.” The goal is specific, measurable, and there’s a deadline to help you stay on track.
Create a complete user training timeline filled with goals and deadlines up to and beyond EHR implementation. Having a detailed health information management roadmap will help you and your team stay on track as they learn the new software.
Take an EHR Certification Training Course
It’s a good idea for at least a few people on your team to get training certification in an EHR/EMR platform. Have them attend formal training sessions to teach them all the ins and outs of proper EHR practices. Once a few team members complete the EHR training certification program, they can help others hone their computer skills before implementation.
There are dozens of places to find EHR certification training. Good places to look include:
- Local colleges
- Online classes
- Your EHR vendor
Often, your EHR vendor is your best source for training. They already know your practice and the EHR solution you’ve chosen, so they won’t have to start from scratch with training.
If you’re set on training your staff in-house, your EHR vendor may still be able to provide you with an EHR training plan template to guide you through the process.
Work with True North: The EHR Training and Implementation Experts
As mentioned, the best way to ensure your team is properly trained before EHR implementation is to consult your EHR vendor. Why?
They’re the only ones who know your unique practice needs. They’ll be able to visit your office and make sure your team members understand how to work all the EHR features to provide unmatched patient care.
The experts at True North are leaders in the EHR information technology field and have been offering advanced EHR solutions to hundreds of hospitals and practices for over 14 years.
We’ll help you identify and implement the perfect IT solutions for your practice, including in-depth EHR training. Even after the implementation is complete, we’ll stand by you with ongoing support services to keep your practice running.
Ready to offer better patient care using EHR software? Contact us for a free consultation to discuss your practice’s needs. We would love to assist.