Medical Software Goes Mobile

More physicians are implementing these hi-tech products, which save patients, slash costs and curtail time.

By David Geer | Summer 2009 | Tech Notes

 

IM Practice Manager

Andras Koser, MD, a hospitalist, CEO, and head physician for Upstate Hospital Services in South Carolina has used IM Practice Manager from IngeniousMed since 2001. The software, accessible from a PDA, enables Dr. Koser to do hospital rounding using the proper ICD-9 and CPT codes to capture all the bills for fast and efficient reimbursements.

“You can use it on a PDA or print out a rounding sheet and use that, entering the data back into a computer after your rounds. Other programs I have tried were too cumbersome for inpatient practice where doctors are constantly on the move,” says Koser.

Physicians can enter new patients into the software in six to seven clicks on their mobile device displays, according to Koser.

“I can teach a doctor how to use it in 20 minutes (for what a rounding physician needs to know),” says Koser. “The person who does my billing loves it. I am managing my own practice. I can generate business intelligence reports including the name of the referring physician and the illness the patient has.”

Before using the software, Koser and his colleagues were carrying pieces of paper with them on their rounds, and they were losing billing captures due to errant coding. “With this program, it is more likely that you will get the codes right. It lets you communicate the codes to the person who actually enters the bills,” says Koser.

The program runs in a Web browser like Internet Explorer on PDAs, PocketPC, and Palm devices. The program comes with an internal chat room for  communicating with other physicians who are seeing the same patients.

“In many medical institutions, the physician is reimbursed based on salary and on performance. So, the program tells you who to pay bonuses to when, for example, a doctor sees more than the 17 patients they are required to see,” Koser says.

With competition, software offerings should increase in number and quality over time. “The company [IngeniousMed] will develop its product based on what the government is looking for the medical industry to achieve in the future,” says Koser.

Insurers are paying for the software based on increased physician performance, decreased costs, and other expectations. As data surfaces about significant improvements resultant from the software, its funding is likely to increase.

David Geer (david@geercom.com) is a technology journalist who lives in Ashtabula, Ohio.

 

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