By now, you have made the decision to transition from a general practice to an in office dispensing practice. Meaning, now you are able to prescribe and fill medicinal orders for your patients right there in your office. This is a powerful addition that will benefit both you and your patients. The only thing left to do is choose and set up the medication dispensing software program that will be best suited for the goals of your practice.
The first step in choosing the right program is to establish the goals your dispensing practice wants to meet, both short-term and long-term.
Set Short-Term Goals
Short-term goals may revolve around the transitioning of your patients and adapting them to the new procedures and how your new dispensing software programs will serve them better. You may also want to market your new in-office pharmacy services.
Choosing the right medicines, the most commonly used among your patients, to prescribe within this new system is another short-term goal to have. You want to get the medicines that you work with the most, not unusual medicines that may expire on your shelf before you get a chance to fill it.
While the medication dispensing software can easily access any medicines, it will be easier for you in the first year to focus on the medicines that are most common to your patients.
Short-term goals will also include training of staff on new systems and procedures that will best serve your patients. In addition, you need to make sure your technological capabilities are more than adequate. They need to be excellent.
Making sure you are following best practices from the Federal, state and local levels is another short-term goal you should have when setting up your new program.
A final short-term goal will be to have a plan of action for times of crisis. Whether the crisis is that your dispensing software program crashes or that a thief is trying to steal the medicines you have on hand, you need a plan.
Set Long-Term Goals
Long-term goals may include steps you will take to grow your business. They may also include updates to dispensing software programs that will improve performance. It will be equally important to maintain compliance with all laws necessary for your practice.
A good dispensing software program will be able to assist you in keeping your practice in compliance.
Assessing the need for updates and upgrades will in turn, force you to assess your financial records frequently. You cannot spend money on needed technology if you are not budgeting and saving for it. Your budget should also include the need for consultants and experts in the medication dispensing software you choose.
You will notice in the first few months of the conversion there are hidden costs. A long-term goal will be to use the dispensing software to find ways to account for these extra costs.
Choosing a Medication Dispensing Software Company
There are many qualities good software needs to meet before you agree to choose their services.
Before you commit to any dispensing software program, check references. Get feedback from other users of the software program. You want honest feedback, not just reviews that are positive. You don’t mind a few glitches, they happen, software is not perfect.
The key is that you are told about possible glitches before you purchase. This shows honesty from the software company. It can also show you a willingness on their part to fix all problems that arise. Once you hear feedback, you can start analyzing other traits you want from the medication dispensing software system.
Below are some of the most important characteristics of a good software program.
Stability and Support
If your computer program is crashing every time you try to prescribe and fill a medicine, you will get frustrated. And so will your staff and patients. Finding a software program that is reliable is one of the most important tasks.
In times where software crashes are unavoidable, you need technical support. The company you choose should provide the best rx software with good support. The tech support staff should also be readily accessible to you during the time of the crisis.
Most quality software companies have around the clock services. You do not have the time to work with the medication dispensing software, your patients need you more. Finding a dispensing software program that comes with expert support is necessary for your practice.
Processing Claims and Orders
Dealing with insurance companies can be frustrating. A good software program will make this process easier, not more difficult. The medication dispensing software should include simple and efficient steps to submitting a claim on behalf of a patient.
Your staff should have few steps to take to submit a patient’s records. They should also have ease in submitting your order for a prescription to be filled in your office. Entering data on the patient should be quick and easy.
All About the Medicine
Your goal is to prevent errors in prescribing. Your software should be able to quickly access information on the medicine you are prescribing. It should alert you to any interactions your patient may have so you can communicate this to them before they leave your office.
The software should keep inventory of your stock of medicines. It should also alert you to when you need to re-order medicines. A good software system can place the re-order for you if they are connected with the pharmaceutical companies.
A Few More Dispensing Software Suggestions
Your new software system should be easy to operate. Technology can be difficult enough. But for the elderly front office staff who is afraid of change, technology can be frightening.
Being able to prove just how easy your dispensing software program is to the staff who aren’t technologically gifted, will be a blessing. Your new system software also needs to be affordable. Because any program can be pricey, you must choose the program that will meet all your needs at the price your practice can afford.
You can upgrade to large capabilities later as you expand and grow.
What would be the point of printing prescriptions and notes when you have a great medication dispensing software program? There would not be one. That is why you need a software program than can allow you to use the least amount of paper.
Going paperless, or close to it, will save you time and money.
While these are a few of the factors to consider when setting up a dispensing system software program, they are enough to teach you what to look for when implementing this important addition to your practice.
Make a checklist or assessment that you can refer to when shopping for the best rx software and for setting up your dispensing software. This will prevent you from forgetting to choose the right program that will meet all your needs. Doing research and assessments on the front end will save you much needed time in the long run.