The clinicians at St. Louis Pediatric Practitioners are seeing a lot more patients these days, and they say implementing the automated appointment reminders in the latest version of PCC's Partner practice management system has made all the difference.
Tennessee pediatrician Dr. Debra Selby tells us charting is easier because of the newest growth charting improvements in PCC EHR.
Since mid-2009, PCC EHR has been beefed up with more than 300 elements of functionality, from major features, such as new and improved growth charts, to user-friendly tweaks, such as the addition of a feature that allows clinicians to create their own medical summary components.
And for us at PCC, it's always gratifying to hear from practitioners who continue to swear by Partner's award-winning performance and enjoy the benefits of an increasingly flexible, accommodating PCC EHR.
Dr. Nash and staff at St. Louis Pediatric Practitioners spent several weeks beta testing the automated appointment reminders feature, which rolled out this week as part of a general release.
"We love it, and we're really busy," says Dr. Alison Nash, whose office set up the feature to automatically contact patients two days in advance of their well visits. "Once it's set up, you don't have to do anything else and it works like clockwork."
The practice's average no-show rate of between 25 and 30 percent has dropped dramatically since it incorporated the automated reminders several weeks ago, Dr. Nash says.
"Yesterday (July 30), we had about 65 patients scheduled for well visits and 61 showed up," Dr. Nash tells us. "Before the automated notifications, that number would have been in the 40s."
Implementation of automated reminders has also lifted a burden from front desk staff, who before had to squeeze in reminder calls between more important daily tasks.
As for the patients, says Dr. Nash, they also appreciate the phone, e-mail or text reminders. "We designed a form for patients asking if they received their reminders and whether they like the communication tool, and we've received an overwhelmingly positive response."
Adds Dr. Nash, "Appointments are being kept, patients are showing up and it makes a big difference. At the end of the day, it will be well worth spending what little it costs per call."
Dr. Debra Selby, the pediatrician from Tennessee, says new growth chart improvements in PCC EHR - such as a tabular data table that now indicates the name of the growth chart and includes individual data points that can be highlighted to reveal more detailed information - have helped make charting visits easier.
Also, charting each visit has become more efficient, now that she can add these improved growth charts to her chart note protocols, says Dr. Selby, managing partner at
"With every patient I see now, I don't have to leave the chart note to see the growth chart, and having the growth chart right in front of me serves as a reminder to talk about weight and exercise during each visit," Dr. Selby tells us. "It's much more efficient and it didn't take us very long at all to get used to the new release."
We're also learning that clinicians appreciate the convenience of the new Vitals Flowsheet, which was also released earlier this week as part of a general PCC EHR update. And clinicians are also telling us they like the convenience and configurability of the "Recent and Upcoming Appointments" component. This feature appears on both the Medical Summary screen and Phone Note screen, and can be added to any chart note protocol.