How Medical Practice Management and CRM Brings Providers and Patients Together


Operating a medical facility is no small feat. Between managing patient records, organizing tasks, scheduling appointments, and facilitating billing and insurance claims, there are thousands of important data points. Given the low margins and high costs associated with patient care, disorganized data can seriously complicate patient care and lead to lawsuits, criminal investigations, or even loss of licensure. 

This standardization of medical records was first addressed in the early 20th century with the founding of the American Association of Record Librarians, known today as the American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA). But without significant advances in information technology, the organization could only do so much. Today’s digital systems are capable of much more. 

Modern medical practice management software automates many of the time-consuming tasks that make conventional paper record-keeping an arduous prospect. Medical practice management software organizes and stores massive amounts of information digitally, eliminating the need for costly and sizable document storage facilities. Today approximately 86% of doctors in the U.S. use electronic healthcare record systems (EHRs). And the best software does more than just organize records; it integrates with modern customer relationship management (CRM) technology to provide an efficient, comprehensive solution that helps patients heal and providers grow their patient base.

Beyond health records.

A CRM is designed to help businesses manage their customer relationships as well as the data associated with them. In healthcare, a CRM can store all contact information, patient preferences, history, and other important data in one central location. The most advanced CRM takes advantage of cloud technology, making it possible for authorized users to update data in real time and ensuring that the same reliable information is available to anyone who needs it. Top medical practice management software can integrate with a healthcare CRM to promote collaboration, provide insights, and streamline the entire process. Medical professionals focus less on records and more on the patients behind them.

The advantages of a CRM for healthcare

A healthcare CRM provides a number of benefits — providers can track patients through their treatments, schedule appointments, send reminders, and perform clerical tasks associated with operating a medical facility. By coupling it with medical practice management software, they can:

Get a 360-degree view of the patient.

An informed doctor is an effective doctor; top CRMs give a full view of their patients’ overall health status in a way that is easy to access and act upon. A healthcare CRM coordinates data from a wide range of sources, including EHRs and medical devices, to create a complete view of the patient. Providers easily access medication information, research current conditions, and see a patient’s appointment history. They can even identify a patient’s contact preferences so that they can engage patients across preferred channels. In fact, according to Salesforce research, healthcare consumers are interested in emerging channels that provide instant responses like SMS/text (69%), live chat/messaging (55%), and video chat (38%).  Millennials and Gen Z consumers are even more likely than older generations to value these channels.

Make reliable care decisions for an entire patient population.

Every patient needs individualized treatment. Unfortunately, there simply aren’t enough hours in the day for most providers to give each and every patient a fully customized care plan. A healthcare CRM, however, changes all of that. It enables medical professionals to segment patient populations based on set parameters and assign tasks to each subgroup — such as checkup reminders or recovery follow-ups. It also lets providers prioritize tasks based on urgency. Additionally, providers facilitate efficient hand-offs when patients switch care providers and even map personal and professional care networks.

Engage across networks, platforms, devices, and stakeholders.

All the patient data in the world isn’t worth much if it isn’t available to the people who need it when they need it. This is why the best healthcare CRM is designed for easy and secure collaboration. Providers coordinate efforts, assign tasks, and directly message one another.

At the same time, care plans require patients to play a key role in their own treatment. A healthcare CRM system can be designed to include patients, chart progress, assign goals, and find specialists for pressing care-related questions. This promotes deeper engagement and allows patients to develop a sense of ownership and responsibility for their own care.

CRM for healthier patient relationships (and a healthier world).

Providers can leverage Salesforce Health Cloud to enhance their existing medical practice management software. Health Cloud augments existing healthcare software features so providers coordinate EHR and HRE systems with membership and claims, demographic information, clinical and non-clinical data, medical devices, and even wearables. Providers, payers, and patients can all collaborate easily on health plans, eliminating the risk of costly and stressful claim errors. And patients take personal ownership of their treatment by tracking their progress, identifying goals, and finding quick answers to questions.
With a healthcare CRM,  medical practice management software becomes a tool for bringing providers and patients together. Medical professionals turn data — and the technology that feeds on it — into a powerful tool that improves patient satisfaction and patient-focused treatment.

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