There is no doubt that clinical notes are necessary for ensuring quality patient care, healthcare provider communication, and shareholder requirements, but there is also no doubt that they are time-consuming and often inaccurate. This post explores the different types of medical scribes available to help you determine how you can gain more time and provide better, more attentive care during each of your patient encounters.
Different Types of Medical Scribes
There is always the DIY method of keeping patient notes. You spend unpaid chunks of the day writing notes, and then both the notes and your patient care suffer. There’s no good option here. If you make notes while in the office with the patient, you can’t give them your full attention, but if you wait until later, you may have forgotten key details.
You can hire medical scribes. You pick the person, train them, and employ them to do the data entry for you. You have complete control, with all of the good and bad that go with that. You choose the person, train them to your specific needs and specialties, and control their work environment so you know they’re happy. The downside is that you have to do all of the staffing tasks it requires to hire, train, provide benefits, etc. for the employee. This is the most expensive and headache-inducing method of using a medical scribe.
Medical scribe software
Voice recognition software linked to EHR provides the benefits of “taking notes” for you without requiring that you have another person present in the examining room. Some patients find having multiple people in the room unnerving, and this option would be great for them. It is less expensive than having an in-house scribe because you just pay for the software and maintaining the software and hardware. The downside is that it isn’t as accurate as having an in-house scribe because you are relying on what the technology can pick up and register. This is an AI service that uses a human scribe to do the actual transcription into the EMR. The technology is improving, so while you may not want to use it now, you might want to keep your eye on it because it could prove more valuable in the future.
Medical scribe services and virtual scribes
Medical scribe companies like ScribeKick will supply a medical scribe based on your specific needs and specialties. They do the training and HR for you. All you have to do is pay for the service. If patients are uncomfortable with having an additional person in the room, the medical scribe can be on location in another room or working remotely, not even present in the building. This is the easiest and most effective option, and you pay on a per use basis so the costs are low and flexible.
Remote medical scribes, or virtual scribes, use HIPAA-compliant software that records audio in your office to hear what is said and quickly and expertly transcribe from the visit into the EMR. You connect to them with the tap of your finger so they know when to record, and they provide you with real-time documentation. The cost of using a virtual scribe is half that of using in-person scribes, making this both the most enjoyable and the most cost-effective option.
So Many Options
Between the different types of medical scribes and the unique offerings of individual medical scribe companies, you have a vast array of options to meet your needs and your budget. For most healthcare providers, a virtual medical scribe service offers them the best in accuracy, value, and patient satisfaction. Don’t forget that by removing the time you take from your workflow to make clinical notes, you gain more time to see more patients and increase your income. If you provide a lot of telehealth services, medical scribes will work well for these visits as well! Get your medical scribe today!