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      The Richland Center Medical Clinic is pleased to announce that we are implementing a new electronic health record system next month.  We are pleased to offer this major upgrade as it will improve both the quality of your medical care as well as enhance our ability to communicate with you quickly and efficiently.

      For starters, the new software will make the check-in process more efficient. You will be able to register by simply providing a driver’s license and insurance card. The data can immediately be incorporated into your health record. The new system will decrease much of the registration paperwork as well. The process of gathering your medical history will also be more efficient. New patients will be able to complete medical history forms on-line at home and that information can then be imported into your medical chart during your visit. Existing patients can update their medical histories using the same process. 

      An exciting feature of the new system is that it provides interactive prescription data. For patients with several chronic illnesses, it can be hard to remember the names and doses of all their medications.  The new system will allow the Clinic to directly download the names and doses of all of your prescriptions -- even if the medications were written by different doctors and filled at different pharmacies.  We also know that it can be very frustrating to wait in line at the pharmacy only to find out that a prescription requires prior authorization.  We hope to eliminate this issue with our new system, as it will tell us immediately if a prior authorization is needed.  We can even start that prior authorization process while you are still in our office and hopefully eliminate those vexing multiple trips to pick up a prescription.   Most importantly, our system can flag potentially dangerous drug integrations. Studies show that this communication between the healthcare providers and the pharmacies can substantially reduce adverse drug events.

      One of the best features of the new electronic health record is the enhanced ability to communicate with our patients.   With our new patient portal, you will have access to your personal medical records.  It can be a challenge to keep track of all of the doctor’s recommendations during the actual visit but with the new portal, you can review the physician’s instructions in the comfort of your own home.  Patients also will also have access to their upcoming appointment times, x-ray reports, lab results, medical problem list and medications.  If they like, patients can give other family members access to their records.   This could help adult children gain a better grasp of the medical issues facing their elderly parents.  Patients and doctors will be also able to securely exchange messages through our patient portal.

      We are pleased to announce that our patient portal system enables your medical records to become portable.   For example, if you have a medical problem while you are traveling, you can download your personal medical records onto your smart phone.  This would allow the doctor providing you with emergency care to review your medical history, medications and recent laboratory results.  This enhanced capability for sharing your medical records creates the opportunity for a much better outcome as emergency medical personnel can make more informed medical decisions on your behalf.  It also works the other direction.  If you are visiting a specialist outside of the clinic, the information from that visit can be directly scanned into your clinic record which gives your local doctor a more comprehensive knowledge of your entire medical situation.

      Last but not least, you will have better billing information. You will be able to review your bill on the patient portal after the visit.   You can make payments directly on the portal.  Integrated online bill pay is fast, safe, and convenient, thus eliminating the whole process of putting the check in the mail.

      We are excited about our new system and all the benefits it will provide both patients and staff. We will kick off the new system on December 5th. Staff will be on hand to greet you and answer any questions you may have about our new exciting electronic health records system.