A lot can change in ten to fifteen years. In the mid-2000s, “nine out of ten doctors in the U.S. updated their patients’ records by hand and stored them in color-coded files.” By 2017, however, the majority of all providers (67%) had started using electronic health records (or EHRs). For the healthcare industry — typically slow to adopt new technologies — this has been a relatively rapid shift.
But progress won’t stop there. Going forward, healthcare organizations looking to make the most of the data stored in their EHR/EMR will want to consider integration — specifically with a CRM like Salesforce. Here are three reasons why connecting your technology platforms makes sense for both your practice and your patients.
Why Integrate Your EHR/EMR with Salesforce:
#1: It can help boost your bottom line.
In past posts, we’ve covered how an EHR-Salesforce integration can help you create a comprehensive healthcare solution, one that completely modernizes the entirety of the patient lifecycle. What we haven’t explicitly mentioned is the fact that such an integration can also lead to a direct increase in revenue. According to research from Gartner, for about 10% of healthcare organizations, integrating their EHR/EMR with a CRM system will have a strong impact on their bottom line through 2020.
This is no surprise, of course. By connecting your technology platforms, you’ll be able to 1). Market your services more effectively to reach new patients, and 2). Create a world class healthcare experience that helps builds long-standing relationships. In coming years, expect more and more providers to see their integration ROI grow.
#2: Patients want easy access to their healthcare data.
According to a 2014 survey of over 2,000 individuals, 87% of people want to control their healthcare data. At the same time, 55% reported that they didn’t have much (or any) such control. This disparity might strike you as troubling, but it’s not exactly shocking — not when you consider data published by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT.
According to ONC:
- In 2015, only 64% of physicians had an EHR capable of exchanging secure messages with patients
- 63% had the capability for their patients to electronically view their medical record
- 41% had the capability for patients to download their medical record
- 19% had the capability for patients to electronically send (transmit) their medical record to a third party
We agree — those numbers aren’t great. But while many EHR/EMRs don’t come standard with the functionality needed to create secure and easy-to-access patient portals, integrating a platform like Salesforce makes it possible. Specifically, Health Cloud — Salesforce’s patient management platform — can leverage the capabilities of Community Cloud to grant special login access to patients.
#3: You’ll be able to collaborate with other providers.
Most healthcare organizations can safely assume they won’t be the only practice a given patient visits each year. These days, many people seek treatment from a number of different speciality care providers in addition to their primary care provider — everything from dermatologists to neurologists to ophthalmologists. And in fact, some people even visit multiple general practitioners: In one year-long study, 10.9% of participants saw five or more.
What does that mean for your organization? It means you need to be positioned to collaborate with other healthcare organizations. Unfortunately, some EHR/EMRs can’t grant access to providers outside your organization, making it difficult for your patients to receive consistent care.
Again, this is where Health Cloud enters the equation. In the same way it provides login capabilities to patients, it can do the same for other providers. Not only can these providers see the care plans you’ve created for a patient, they’ll also be able to mark goals and tasks complete.
Raising the Bar
Thanks to the internet, consumers have come to demand a great deal from businesses in every industry. They expect to do all their banking via an app, receive online purchases within a matter of hours and access a nearly infinite amount of high-quality content on demand. It won’t be long before they expect more from their healthcare providers, too.
If you’ve got questions about how to get started on the path towards integration, check out our on-demand webinar: