Your are correct on all three accounts.
Ideally the clinical staff should charge out today's procedures and complete the notes prior to dismissing the patient. For whatever reason, most of the clinical staff feel they don't have enough time to complete the notes before escorting the patient to the front office staff, so they either leave the chart open and attempt to complete the notes or whatever they are doing in the chart. Therefore the front office is unable to complete the checkout or access the treatment plan. If the clinicians would suspend the chart at least the check out could be completed and the next appt made. Unfortunately, it appears most clinicians brains are wired completely different than most front business staff where my experience is the business staff could complete the process that is expected to be done by the clinicians in the back through the chart if needed and complete the check out.
If it makes you feel any better, we can't even get ours to post the correct treatment for that day before bringing the patient up (the docs still hand write the notes in paper charts)!
A follow up question to all:
When using the Chart, procedures are not posted to the ledger until the doctor/hygienist completes treatment. I have a concern surrounding patients checking out while the clinical staff are still charting Completed work. This does not pertain to notes or treatment planning, but specifically to work Completed during the visit.
Does anyone see an issue/problem if the front office staff were able to access the account/checkout while the clinical staff are still working in the back?
I can certainly see an issue with the front office being in the account while the clinical staff is still entering completed work for that day. Would someone be able to shed some light on how the clinical staff would be able to post completed work in the charting module on the day that services are rendered? I don't work much in that aspect of the program, and this seems to be a routine stumbling block for the clinical team.
I tested a few workflows yesterday. During those tests I discovered it is possible to have the charting open on one machine and the patient's clipboard on another. The catch is that the clipboard cannot be accessed from the appointment. In order to access the clipboard, I opened their record from the Patient Search. This is not ideal but it does illuminate something we may be able to change quickly, namely accessing the patient's record from the appointment.
Does anyone access patient records this way (from the pick list while the patient's record is open in charting)? Please let me know if you do and what the results of your attempts are.
As we near completion on the work I wanted to circle back and let you know how v9 would handle these situations.
Example 1 - "...say they are putting in a treatment plan - I am waiting until they are finished. I cannot get in the chart to post payment-I'm stuck waiting."
Unfortunately this won't change if they are adding treatment to an In Progress or Accepted treatment plan. If they are adding to a Proposed treatment plan you will be able to post the payment.
Example 2 - "a new patient or existing and I need to put in x-rays from a perio office that just came via email or a new patient and oh they remember they had current x-rays at another office and I need to import x-rays while pt is in the chair...can't because the hygienist is always already in the chart. Can only export."
You will be able to do this in v9.
Example 3 - "assistant's cannot take x-rays when pt is moved into their room if they need to -if hygiene is still in the chart."
This will also be possible in v9.
Example 4 - "a new patient is in the doctor's chair for an exam then heads to hygiene or an existing pt is in hygiene then needs to see the doctor for a restorative need- it never fails to hear "who's in the chart?" (hygiene is typically guilty) but they always come ask me as well."
Not a problem in v9. Only one user can be charting in Completed mode, but everyone in the office can be in this patient's chart.
Example 5 - "There also have been a couple of times where the record was locked and then we get a glitch and nobody can access the pt's chart until the next day"
If there is a phantom lock I don't anticipate there will be a change. You may see the updated message that tells you a particular user and a specific workstation is currently in the file. I'll be curious to see how this play out when your office updates.
I'm looking forward to seeing v9 released and making what was once thought impossible, possible!
Good afternoon @sonyap,
I've got good news regarding this workflow you described. In v9 (slated for later this year), this will no longer be an issue. You will be able to update the patient's clipboard while they team has the chart open.