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Otolaryngology (ENT) is concerned with the surgical management and treatment of diseases and disorders of the ear, nose and throat, as well as the related structure of the head. It is the oldest medical specialty practiced in the US and requires software designed to fulfill the requirements of ENT related abnormalities.
Template Notes – SOAP notes designed especially for otolaryngology are customizable so physicians can personalize them according to their needs. The templates are specific to ENT requirements and cover areas like:
ICD/CPT Codes – Avoiding the clutter of thousands of unrelated codes, ENT-specific EMR provides ICD-10 codes for their specialty. This ensures accurate claims, easier billing and an overall faster process that assists in the efficiency of the entire workflow of the medical practice.
Equipment Integration – ENT EMR should be integrated with devices and equipment that helps in diagnosis, treatment and assessment. This allows all documentation to be stored on one platform for easier access.
Lab Interface – Otolaryngology often requires lab testing. ENT specific electronic health record should have a built-in lab interface for automatic result availability, as well as notices for tests due.
Allergy and Medication Management – Some ENT diseases are related to allergies. An interactive electronic health record with secure messaging allows data sharing between a patient’s immunologist and otolaryngologist. This way, ENT specialists can keep track of patient allergies and prescribe medication that won’t result in a reaction.
Sleep Studies – ENT specific EHR (electronic health record) should also have templates to assist in tracking, and assessing data for sleep apnea, snoring or other otolaryngology-related sleep disorders.
How to Choose ENT EHR Vendor
There are countless otolaryngology EHR vendors that provide the software you need. To narrow the selection down to those that fill your requirements as a specialty as well as a medical practice you need to keep a few things in mind.
Size – Some vendors cater better to large practices while some are best suited to smaller ones. EMR systems are designed keeping a certain number of users, scalability and support required in mind. When selecting a vendor keep in mind the size of your practice.
System Design – The choice, essentially, is between installation of the software in your on-site computer server, or cloud-based software that is available anywhere via Internet. Which system a practice goes for depends on their personal choice and comfort level. Some doctors feel more comfortable having the system on their computer server because they feel this is more compliant with HIPAA requirements, while others need to have access to their database wherever they are. You’ll need to shortlist vendors who fulfill your needs in this department.
Certification – It makes sense to make sure the software you’re going to purchase is certified. For otolaryngology the certification you should be looking out for is by the ONC-Authorized Testing and Certification Body (“ONC-ATCB”). They are responsible for making sure your vendor meets Meaningful Use objectives and is HIPAA compliant.
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