When you think of all the changes coming down the pike, it gets a little overwhelming, but don’t panic…. this article will ease some of the pressure and give you an action plan to make these transitions more bearable and/or manageable. The major changes on the horizon are the conversion to ICD-10, Meaningful Use for incentive programs for Medicare and Medicaid, and last but certainly not least, the switch from paper charts to electronic health records (EHR) if you haven’t already made that change. Following these steps can relieve some of the stress in your practice:
- Assessment: Inventory what needs to be done – Make a list of all the projects that need to be accomplished and utilize the tool most hospitals use for patient care: a status board. It’s a great means for keeping track and prioritizing those projects so everyone stays on the same page.
- Formulation: Develop a game plan – Now that you have the list of the outstanding projects, assess your staff and identify the employees best suited to oversee each task.
- Treatment: Check projects off the list – Once you have the key people set for each assignment, prioritize the jobs that need to be accomplished first or the ones that can “kill two birds with one stone.”
- Follow-up: Stay organized and on task – In any situation, follow-up is always a key element. You don’t want the ball to drop after all your hard work in implementing these changes. So whether you do the monitoring, or you hire someone outside of your practice to tackle this – such as a consultant – make sure your office is making progress with the changes so you can stay on track with regulatory deadlines.
Change is inevitable and right now, it might seem like you’re the target in a huge game of dodgeball. But with a little pre-planning and follow-up, you can win the game!