When the flowers begin to bloom and the temperatures begin to rise, many turn to the idea of spring cleaning. Now, when you think about your therapy practice, I’m not talking about grabbing a mop or dusting those shelves in the storage room. I’m referring to an organizational cleanse!
When your days grow longer and your patient list continues to multiply, it may be hard to find a few hours here and there to really make important changes that could completely streamline your office. However, as spring is ushered in, let’s take a look at a few ways to take part in this seasonal tradition to make your environment much more efficient.
1. Go Paperless
Whenever I think about the best way to really de-clutter a therapy office, my mind always goes to those stacks of paper that are constantly piled up on everyone’s desks. Not only can going paperless save you a good chunk of money AND make organization a breeze, but it can also be good for the environment! Stop printing off those emails and other unnecessary documents! Instead, keep them stored for easy access on a variety of apps, like Google Drive or OneDrive, where they can even be used on your smartphone. You may also want to invest in a good scanner and begin storing your older records digitally. Even more importantly, look into an EHR software. Finally, set up a recycling system and be ready to ditch that paper for good!
2. Find Better Ways to Screen Your Patients
Screening patients is such an important task in a therapy office! Therefore, it is imperative to have a streamlined process for asking the right questions and evaluating the answers in an efficient manner. If you’re still using a PHQ-9 in a paper format, check into using digital tools instead. Not only will you be adhering to the suggestions in tip #1, but your patients will love being able to access questionnaires and surveys right from their smartphones. You can also set up a kiosk in your waiting room with a tablet! Really… how cool is THAT?
3. Think About New Policies for Time Management
A therapy practice is constantly changing. This means that you may need to occasionally re-evaluate your policies and adapt to new ideas that will save you time. For example, you may find that the number of missed appointments are on the rise. So be sure to incorporate ways to ensure that no-shows don’t leave you with an empty waiting room. A good digital practice calendar can assist with time management and scheduling appointments. It may also be part of a package that includes options for billing patients. And better yet, it can also send patients reminders, so those missed appointments will soon be last year’s problem!
4. Take Better Therapy Notes
If there is one thing that can keep a therapist in the office past dinner, it is typically finishing up the day’s therapy notes. However, gone are the days of taking notes by hand. Now you can replace the notepad and pen with sleek software and organizational perks that may save you 30 minutes every day. The best therapy notes software offers a variety of templates to choose from, even allowing you the option to completely customize your note-taking experience. You’ll never look at taking therapy notes the same way ever again!
5. Introduce Video Sessions
Dreaming about hosting therapy sessions online would have seemed like some type of futuristic scenario even a couple of years ago. However, technology has really armed therapists with a myriad of options to ensure that they are providing the best possible care for their patients. Setting up HIPAA compliant video sessions for your practice can ensure that your patients have a reliable, convenient alternative to in-office appointments. Plus, video sessions are commonly offered as an additional feature of therapy notes or EHR software, so there’s no need to download anything else! Could they make it any easier?
You know what they say about spring cleaning. Not only does it clear the cobwebs from your office, but it removes the clutter from your mind, as well. This makes room for the important things in life. If you follow these easy steps, you’ll be able to open your windows for a nice spring breeze, put your feet up on your desk and embrace this newly found feeling of well-being that accompanies the satisfaction of a clutter-free existence. Who knew it was THIS easy?
Want more information on organization, going paperless, video sessions and therapy notes? Check out some of our similar topics for even more helpful information!