Now is the time to optimize electronic health record systems

Optimizing electronic health records (EHR) is about to get more challenging, but there are ways to prepare for organizations. With a looming economic downturn, a labor shortage in professional services, and continuing supply chain disruptions, it can seem daunting to overhaul, improve, or implement an EHR system. Optimizing these systems is key to creating operational efficiencies, reducing high administrative costs and improving financial stability. Here are some ways to optimize your EHR system during a period of constant outages.

Know your EHR system

It is important to understand the functionality and benefits of tools that your organization has already implemented but may not yet be adopted by your department or other departments. It is also critical to know how available updates or features of your current electronic health record or new system could affect overall business goals and generate value. Knowing the capabilities of an EHR system can reduce the need for a third-party system, reduce overall application and training costs, and reduce complexity for staff members working across multiple systems.

Improve your workflows

An optimized EHR system can improve workflows, catalyze queues of refusals or referral responses, and improve planning models for open access. Improving workflows through EHR optimization also creates the opportunity to reduce open meetings and delayed debit times by improving clinical documentation tools and templates.

With the continuing shortage of frontline manpower and back-office staff, it is more important than ever to ensure that digital solutions are integrated and implemented to reduce administrative burdens and increase supplier and patient satisfaction. EHR systems can be upgraded with dashboards that include analytics for key metrics such as rejection or supplier efficiency metrics. By leveraging automated workflows and activities, and ensuring that the system supports both the supplier organization and the suppliers themselves, you can reduce the impact of labor shortages.

Simplify satisfaction

Right now, improving the patient experience is critical in all supplier organizations. Many patients are increasingly dissatisfied with their care, and some may even choose to postpone their care altogether. Results from a recent survey by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research showed that 8 in 10 Americans are at least moderately concerned about getting access to quality health care when they need it. Ease of access to telemedicine and emergency care services and the increased consumerization of healthcare continue to impact patient loyalty. An optimized EHR system can help improve the patient experience by simplifying the referral process.

Optimizing the EHR system can also increase the efficient use of the patient portal and enable patients or their healthcare professionals to take the lead in managing care. A developed patient portal facilitates self-scheduling of online appointments, allows patients to update their medical information, and offers the ability to review medications. Mature patient portals can simplify online check-in and arrival, online bill payment, and the patient’s ability to obtain their own records and visit notes. An optimized EHR system and patient portal create real-time access to patient data for patients, their healthcare professionals and other providers in a way that was not possible before the digital transformation. The ability for provider organizations and healthcare professionals to share patient data more effectively can lead to better and more personalized treatment.

It doesn’t have to be expensive

If a complete overhaul of your organization’s EHR system is out of the question, you can still make measurable and meaningful changes. Building and re-establishing patient relationships should be a priority for all provider organizations, so a good place to start is to optimize the patient portal. Make the most of the reports, dashboards and other features offered by the current EHR system and use the technology you have at its best. EHR systems have the tools to generate documentation and order efficiencies for a high-revenue-generating specialty, or you can use these tools to take a struggling specialty and improve its documentation and reporting.

Adoption and optimization of EHR systems not only have the potential to create operational efficiencies and lead to better outcomes for provider organizations, but they can also improve patient care with faster, safer and more decision making. cheap. By optimizing your EHR system now, your organization will be better equipped to address future challenges in healthcare, the workforce and the economy.

Julie McGuire, MSN, RN, is CEO of the BDO Center for Healthcare Excellence & Innovation. You have more than 25 years of experience in healthcare and 15 years of experience working with operational and clinical partners to deliver and transform technology into new and existing facilities and services. BDO USA provides insurance, tax and financial advisory services to clients in the United States and around the world and is a member of BDO International, the world’s fifth largest accounting network.


  1. 8 ways to get the most out of your EHR system. BDO. August 2022. Accessed October 12, 2022.
  2. Health Stability Outlook Report: 2022 and 2023. BDO. September 2022. Accessed October 12, 2022.
  3. Support for a greater role of the government in health care for the elderly. The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. August 2022. Accessed October 12, 2022.

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