Hospitals have a lot to keep track of - patient triage, medical records, surgery schedules, equipment reservations, staffing, and supply inventory is just scratching the surface.
Hospital management software streamlines many repetitive processes, allowing your team to focus on providing quality care.
Hospital management software (hospital information system) primarily assists with administrative needs in a hospital including financial accounting, maintaining accurate patient records, and scheduling. Comprehensive hospital software assists in decision-making processes for assigning patients to the right room or ward so they receive proper care, as well as deciding when to purchase the equipment and tools your hospital needs. Hospital management software will also assist with data analysis so you can optimize the revenue cycle and properly manage your workforce.
More hospitals are turning to ERP systems to make their business processes more efficient. They’re also using ERP to prepare for business risks caused by pandemics and other health crises.
According to HIMMS Analytics, ERP software has been slowly climbing over the last 10 years. In 2008, 18.8% of hospitals adopted ERP software and 38.4% adopted ERP software by 2018. While nearly all hospitals have an EMR system and patient billing software in place, full ERP systems are becoming more popular to handle supply chain management, workforce management, and financial accounting.
Financial accounting keeps track of revenue from donations, and payments received from services provided, and track expenses from payroll, and medical equipment and supply purchases.
EHR, formerly known as Electronic Medical Records (EMR), keeps track of patient metadata and medical history. An EHR allows patient-centered records to be updated in real-time in the patient’s digital medical chart. The EHR keeps track of information including:
Keep track of the patient’s admission details, doctors or surgeons working with the patient, the patient’s dietary specifications, patient discharge instructions, and patient consent forms.
Track patient details for those that aren’t admitted including services performed (labs, procedures, diagnostic imaging and x-rays, etc), and invoicing. Hospital management systems can automatically notify patients through text messaging or email about payment due dates, appointment scheduling reminders, and updated chart data.
Staff scheduling - assign doctors and staff to patients based on the patient’s care requirements and staff qualifications.
Room/equipment scheduling - keep track of occupied and vacant rooms, and track where equipment is and who is using it.
Appointment reminders - remind patients of appointment dates/times via text, email, or automated phone call.
Medical billing manages the billing process (also referred to as revenue cycle management), which includes insurance validation before the appointment, co-pay processing, tracking and coding billable procedures performed, sending the statement to the patient, and monitoring profitability.
A Black Book survey found that 26% of hospitals in the United States don’t have a revenue cycle management system in place. Implementing hospital software in your business can help you optimize your revenue cycle by automating invoices and sending automatic payment reminders to ensure more payments are collected on time.
Hospital software’s risk management functionalities help ensure your healthcare facility stays within federal and state regulations including:
HIPAA - Keeps protected health information secure. Hospital management systems have security measures in place to allow only authorized personnel to access private patient data.
HL7 - Health Level-7 (HL7) regulates the standards for transferring administrative and clinical data between different software applications that are used by different healthcare providers. Hospital management systems ensure healthcare data follows HL7 standards, so the data can be accessed internationally.
|Grant Management||Helps hospitals secure grant-based funding through grant discovery and application management and progress tracking. When the award is secured, monitor and report grant-related activity.|
|Asset Tracking||Track physical assets including medical devices, imaging equipment, surgical instruments, etc.
Asset tracking functionalities keep records of when the machinery or equipment was bought and the last time maintenance was done.
You can also use barcode, QR code, or RFID tracking to know where your equipment is located and who is using it.
|Medical Supply Inventory Management||Inventory management keeps track of consumable medical supplies that are used on patients that need to be regularly replenished including medications, surgical implants, bandages, disposable PPE, etc.
Hospital management systems can notify you when inventory is getting low, so you always have what you need on hand.
The price of hospital management software varies greatly depending on a number of factors including the functionalities you need, the size of the hospital and affiliated hospitals that will use the same system, and whether or not the software is cloud-based or locally installed.
An example of a lower-priced hospital management software is Insta HMS starting at $20/month/user. This is much less than a full ERP system like Multiview that starts at $999/month/user.
Free hospital management software can work for start-ups; however, functionality and the number of users allowed is usually limited. As your organization grows, you will grow out of a free system. Open source hospital management systems are also available, but it will be a big investment of your time to create what you need out of a system.
Some free and open source hospital software solutions include: