Technology as a time-saving tool


See how one practice uses a computer system to stay on track.

Woodland Hospital for Animals doesn't waste time putting pen to paper. The Kentwood, Mich., practice uses a system that makes check-out easier, provides more accurate patient records, and saves team members time. And all it takes is a laptop and practice software.

In the past, doctors would hand-write information about patients on a form during an exam. The doctors would hand the sheet off to a team member, who then entered the information into the patient's electronic file. These days, doctors relay patient information to a veterinary assistant during the exam. The assistant then enters the information directly into the patient's file on the laptop. “That saves the staff a lot of time,” says receptionist Jana VanHalm. “Plus, we don't have to try to decipher the doctor's handwriting.”

The practice also uses computers to make check-out quick and painless for clients. During exams, the assistant will also make note of any services the client has purchased. When the client arrives at the front desk to check out, a receptionist simply opens the record on the computer, where the bill has already been calculated. Many practice software systems offer this handy feature, which is customizable to reflect a practice's individual fees.

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