Investing in some favorite items can help improve your practice in diverse ways. Here are some possibly surprising investments that offer a good ROI to physicians and their practices.
These items were noted by Physicians Practice and were chosen by other medical providers, who named these their “favorite purchases” for their practices.
Best Purchases Returning Impressive Returns on Investment (ROI)
- Fish tanks: People hate to wait for anything. Patients visiting their doctor compound this issue by coming with anxiety. An impressive fish tank in your waiting room psychologically puts your patients at ease, minimizing their anxiety. Instead of spending extra—and non-billable—time calming patients’ fears and apprehensions, give them the “soothing” effect of watching fish swim around their tank in your waiting room.
- Single serve coffee brewers: Doctors and practice staff must remain alert through busy, stressful days welcoming and seeing patients. Many physicians named single serve coffee makers as one of the best purchases to make their practices more efficient. By reducing waste from unfinished pots of coffee, single serve brewers also decrease the cost of providing coffee.
- Flatbed or multiple page scanners: As the healthcare industry moves to electronic health records (EHRs), scanners are quickly becoming favorite purchases to improve the efficiency and profitability of medical practices around the nation. Physicians also enjoy additional benefits by reducing the volume of paper by saving all documents electronically.
- Speech recognition programs: Instead of dictating chart information into a recorder and waiting for practice personnel to transcribe this data on a computer, speech recognition software allows the physician to directly record—and edit—his or her information into practice computer systems. This time- and money-saving option is a welcome aide for all physicians hopting to conserve hours.
- In- and out-house billing options: Top third party billing firms, such as M-Scribe Technologies, save practices both time and money. Smaller and mid-sized medical practices reap these consistent benefits. Larger practices, staffed by more “traditionalist” physicians, may want to invest in cutting-edge software and pay the extra cost of more staff to keep billing in-house. Those that want to keep this function must commit to thorough staff training and design a verification policy that double checks claim billing information before submission. Both choices deliver benefits, although in-house billing comes with added cost and responsibility.
- Real time locating systems: These systems help doctors save time (and money) by locating needed people or things (instruments, machines, exam aides, etc.) to save time when consulting with patients. Mid-size and larger practices benefit most from these systems that display their exact floor plan in real time for the physician. While the provider cannot bill for using these systems, these locators can save valuable time, particularly important when seeing a high volume of patients daily.
- Lactation scales: Pediatric practice physicians find these items among their favorite purchases for multiple reasons. These scales measure the quantity of breast milk ingested by infants, helping physicians calculate the volume of milk transfer. Lactation scales also reassure new mothers that their babies are getting sufficient milk for good health and proper growth. These scales can also alert the doctor to any ingestion deficiencies they need to address.
- EHR software systems. Unlike some other favorites, this is a larger scale investment, but helps doctors and practices transmit health information instantaneously, with high-level security. Since the healthcare industry is converting patient medical records from paper to electronic data, many physicians name this investment a favorite.
Physicians Practice offers this list of favorite purchases for and chosen by other doctors to improve their organizations. You might already have your own list of favorites, but consider some of these as potential additions to or replacements for a few of your current favorites.