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Updated May 23, 2024

The Best Medical Software of 2024

Your practice wants to provide stress-free healthcare without breaking the bank. Medical software like DrChrono is the answer.

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Max Freedman, Business Operations Insider and Senior Analyst
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This guide was reviewed by a Business News Daily editor to ensure it provides comprehensive and accurate information to aid your buying decision.
Best for Medical Billing Companies
RXNT Medical Billing
RXNT logo
  • Starts at $110/month/provider
  • Free setup and training
  • One- to two-month setup process
USALinks to RXNT Medical Billing
Visit Site
  • Starts at $110/month/provider
  • Free setup and training
  • One- to two-month setup process
Best Workflow
CareCloud Medical Software
CareCloud company logo
  • Starts at $349/month/provider
  • Free training
  • Multiple setup tiers
  • Starts at $349/month/provider
  • Free training
  • Multiple setup tiers
Best for New Practices
DrChrono Medical Software
Dr. Chrono logo
  • Starts at $249/month/provider
  • Free setup and training
  • One- to two-month setup process
  • Starts at $249/month/provider
  • Free setup and training
  • One- to two-month setup process
Best for Large Practices
AdvancedMD Medical Software
AdvancedMD company logo
  • Sales estimate required
  • Free setup and training
  • Two days of onsite setup support
  • Sales estimate required
  • Free setup and training
  • Two days of onsite setup support
Best for Reporting
athenahealth Medical Software
athenahealth company logo
  • Starts at $140/month/provider
  • Fees from 4% to 7% of collections
  • 11-week setup process
  • Starts at $140/month/provider
  • Fees from 4% to 7% of collections
  • 11-week setup process

Table of Contents

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Our hands-on investigation into the best medical software involved trying each system ourselves and analyzing how each feature would help medical practices conduct everyday operations. Specifically, we looked for tools to aid appointment scheduling, patient communication, charting and notetaking, revenue cycle management, telehealth and more. We considered the costs of implementation and monthly contract rates, as well as the availability of customer assistance.

Over the years, Business News Daily has tested hundreds of business software applications to identify the best tools and services for startups and small businesses. We combine our firsthand experiences with in-depth industry research and third-party user reviews to assess vendor claims and determine the effectiveness of each product. Every evaluation is backed by our commitment to accuracy and fairness. Learn more about our methodology.

Medical software, including electronic medical records (EMR) systems and practice management software, are essential parts of medical practices and healthcare systems. Not only is the use of these platforms a regulatory requirement, but they enable medical practices to operate more effectively and deliver higher-quality care to patients. Medical software supports the many functions a practice needs every day, including setting appointments, updating patient information, checking insurance eligibility, storing medical charts and test results, prescribing medications, and generating claims and managing medical billing.

When a software platform is responsible for so many critical functions, it’s important to choose the very best. To help with that, we’ve spent hundreds of hours testing the best medical software to find cost-effective and reliable options that are most suited for small- to mid-sized medical practices. The solutions we considered are compatible with a range of specialties, include both administrative and clinical tools, and provide patient engagement tools that improve a practice’s relationship with its patients. Ultimately, we selected the following platforms as our best picks, each of which comes with its own unique value proposition.

athenahealth platform

The best medical software makes it easy for providers to plan their day at a glance, with useful scheduling tools and the ability to review patient profiles in one or two clicks. This example comes from athenahealth’s medical software, our best pick for reporting. Source: athenahealth

How We Decided

Our team spends weeks evaluating dozens of business solutions to identify the best options. To stay current, our research is regularly updated.

46

considered

8

reviewed

6

selected

Our team spends weeks evaluating dozens of business solutions to identify the best options. To stay current, our research is regularly updated.

46

considered

8

reviewed

6

selected

Compare Our Best Picks

BND Ribbon
Our Top Picks for 2024
RXNT Medical Billing
CareCloud Medical Software
DrChrono Medical Software
AdvancedMD Medical Software
athenahealth Medical Software
Tebra (Formerly Kareo) Medical Software
Rating8.8/108.4/109.0/108.8/109.0/108.8/10
Pricing

Medical Billing Companies

Workflow

New Practices

Large Practices

Reporting

Ease of Use

Reports

Starts at $110 per month, per provider (EMR); $298 per month, per provider (Full Suite)

Starts at $349 per month, per provider

Starts at $249 per month, per provider

Starts at $429 per month, per provider (PM only); $729 per month, per provider (Full Suite)

Starts at $140 per month, per provider

Starts at $150 per month, per provider

Implementation Period

Dozens of pre-built reports

Dozens of prebuilt and customizable reports; MIPS/MACRA tracking report

Dozens of prebuilt and customizable reports

500+ custom reports

140 prebuilt reports, highly customizable and connected to athenaNet database

Dozens of standard reports, customizable reports

Training

4 to 8 weeks

Varies by package

As little as 4 weeks; includes dedicated account manager

8 to 11 weeks; includes dedicated account manager

4 to 6 weeks; includes dedicated account manager

Duration varies; includes dedicated account manager

Mobile app

Weekly onboarding coaching

Varies by implementation package

Training included in subscription price

28 hours of online training and self-guided resources included in implementation fee

Ongoing consultative approach

1-on-1 training, recorded webinars, and self-guided training in Kareo University

Review Link
Scroll Table

Our Reviews

RXNT logo
  • Starting Price: $110/month, per provider for the EHR system alone; $298/month, per provider for the full software suite.
  • Key Features: Medical billing and revenue cycle management tools; secure and HIPAA-compliant telehealth features; iOS and Android-supported mobile application.
  • Setup and Training: Setup and training are included with a subscription at no extra cost. Implementation typically takes between one and two months for most medical practices.
Editor's Rating: 8.8/10
Visit Site

Why We Chose RXNT

We chose RXNT as the best medical software for billing companies because it includes robust medical billing tools and an add-on module specifically for revenue cycle management. Useful for outsourced medical billing services or medical practices that want to keep their billing and coding in-house, RXNT excels when it comes to managing the financial aspects of a healthcare organization. We especially like the competitive subscription pricing, giving practices the tools they need to reduce days in accounts receivable, boost collections and spend less on their software suite.

RXNT prescriptions

RXNT offers a clean user interface that makes it easy to absorb information quickly. The prescriptions screen in the example above shows patient names, the prescribing provider, the date and time the prescription was made, and the pharmacy to which it was sent. Source: RXNT

RXNT Pricing

Subscription Plan Price Features and Tools
EHR System $110 per month, per provider Clinical features such as patient medical charts, e-prescribing, lab integrations and test results
Practice Management Software $193 per month, per provider Administrative features such as scheduling appointments, patient profiles, insurance verification and medical billing tools
EHR + PM Bundle $298 per month, per provider Complete software suite including EHR and PM software features
E-Prescribing $665 per year, per provider Add-on for the e-prescribing of controlled substances

RXNT Pros

  • It is highly cost-effective, with a starting price of $110 per month per provider for the clinical software and $298 per month per provider for an integrated EHR system and practice management software.
  • The subscription price includes free setup and training, as well as an average implementation timeline that won’t cause major disruptions to operations.
  • The mobile application is supported on both iOS and Android devices, giving users the choice of their preferred operating system and further reducing the learning curve.

RXNT Cons

  • E-prescribing of controlled substances requires a significant add-on fee beyond the subscription price.
  • Medical billing services are unavailable through RXNT and practices must maintain an in-house medical biller and coder.
  • Fast-growing practices and large health systems generally need a more scalable solution than RXNT.

What RXNT Users Have To Say

Real-life users of RXNT like its e-prescribing tools and how easy it is to import data from other systems. The biggest drawback users mention is sluggish customer service that can be slow to respond to requests for assistance. RXNT earned an 8.0/10 on TrustRadius.

CareCloud company logo
  • Starting Price: $349 per month, per provider
  • Key Features: Drag-and-drop navigation and scheduling; real-time batch insurance eligibility verification; extensive patient experience features
  • Setup and Training: A basic level of training is included in the subscription price. Setup varies depending on the specifics of each practice and the implementation tier chosen.
Editor's Rating: 8.4/10

Why We Chose CareCloud

CareCloud offers a highly customizable yet user-friendly interface that, when tested, made it easy for us to set up tailored workflows unique to each user. We liked that, whatever your role in a medical practice, the software is flexible enough to support your day-to-day tasks and provide the most relevant information at a glance. We also were impressed with the CareCloud Breeze add-on, which allows patients to manage their own appointments, information and payments, making each visit more efficient for a practice’s front office staff.

CareCloud anayltics

We liked CareCloud’s neatly organized user interface, which features a logical arrangement of tools on the top bar flowing from appointment scheduling to patient registration to clinical tools to medical billing tools. The example above shows a practice’s accounts receivable, which is easily digestible thanks to color-coded graphs and charts, as well as helpful filters to adjust breakdowns of the data. Source: CareCloud

CareCloud Pricing

Subscription Plan Price Features and Tools
CareCloud Central (PM) $349 per month, per provider Administrative tools such as appointment scheduling, patient demographics, insurance eligibility verification and medical billing tools
CareCloud Charts (EHR + PM) $628 per month, per provider Administrative and clinical tools, including patient medical charts, imaging, lab integrations and e-prescribing
CareCloud Breeze $199 per month, per provider Patient engagement features, such as check-in kiosks and self-service tools

CareCloud Pros

  • Highly user-friendly software with intuitive navigation and useful drag-and-drop tools.
  • Competitive pricing and good value, starting at $349 per month, per provider for the practice management software and $628 per month, per provider for the full suite.
  • Customizable software makes CareCloud suitable for every user and can help streamline day-to-day tasks no matter the role.

CareCloud Cons

  • The company prefers long-term contracts and you may be encouraged to sign on for three years of service.
  • The useful patient engagement platform is an add-on that represents a significant cost of $199 per month, per provider.
  • Some training is included, but implementation support requires an additional fee and the duration of the process can vary depending on which tier you select.

What CareCloud Users Have To Say

CareCloud customers say the company offers effective training designed to the specific needs of the practice and that customer support is responsive and helpful. Some challenges include slow loading times and limitations regarding mobile functionality. CareCloud earned a 9.1/10 on TrustRadius.

Read our full CareCloud review.

Dr. Chrono logo
  • Starting Price: $249 per month per provider
  • Key Features: Intuitive user interface with easily navigated drag-and-drop functionality; automated workflows for front office efficiency; secure, HIPAA-compliant patient portal for self-service.
  • Setup and Training: Training and setup support is included free at all subscription levels. Implementation generally takes between one and two months.
Editor's Rating: 9/10

Why We Chose DrChrono

DrChrono is our pick for best medical software for new practices because it is cost-effective, easy to set up and provides an intuitive user experience. We found it it simple for new users to quickly get accustomed to DrChrono, helping new practices focus on bringing in patients, driving satisfaction and establishing a revenue stream quickly. Thanks to DrChrono’s useful medical billing tools, as well, new practices can start off on the sound financial footing needed to make additional investments in growing their business.

DrChrono dashboard

DrChrono offers a customizable user interface so you can establish workflows in a way that best suits your practice. In the example above, the user is able to customize the appointment scheduler, including fields like “reason for visit” and color coding. Source: DrChrono

DrChrono Pricing

Subscription Plan Price Features and Tools
Prometheus $249 per month, per provider Basic administrative and clinical features, such as setting appointments, sending patient reminders, provider views, medical charting and e-prescribing.
Hippocrates $349 per month, per provider Prometheus features plus more advanced tools, such as expanded e-prescribing, lab integrations and real-time insurance eligibility verification.
Apollo $599 per month, per provider Hippocrates features plus additional tools, such as integrated claims management features and electronic remittance advice for claims.
Apollo Plus 4 to 8% of monthly collections All Apollo features plus revenue cycle management (RCM) services

DrChrono Pros

  • Very competitively priced, starting at $249 per month, per provider for access to both administrative and clinical features.
  • Scalable with four pricing tiers suitable for growing businesses, including an outsourced medical billing service option.
  • One of the most intuitive and user-friendly medical software platforms we tested during our review.

DrChrono Cons

  • Customer support wait times are often lengthy, sometimes requiring the creation of tickets for fixes.
  • The best features are restricted to more expensive pricing tiers, locking out practices on a tighter budget.
  • The mobile application is only supported on iOS devices, so Android users won’t be able to access it.

What DrChrono Users Have To Say

DrChrono’s customers like its clinical template customization and overall ease of use. However, some complain about the general lack of customization options throughout the software. DrChrono earned a 9.0/10 on TrustRadius.

Read our full DrChrono review.

AdvancedMD company logo
  • Starting Price: $429 per month, per provider for practice management software; $729 per month for provider for practice management software plus EHR system.
  • Key Features: Customizable dashboard with data views and task management tools; highly scalable for growing and large practices; up to 30 percent discounts for customized bundle plans.
  • Setup and Training: Setup support and guided training are included in the subscription price. On-site implementation support is free for two days for practices with more than $200,000 in monthly collections. Setup period typically takes between eight and 11 weeks.
Editor's Rating: 8.8/10

Why We Chose AdvancedMD

We chose AdvancedMD as the best medical software for large practices because it offers the most powerful, scalable slate of features for both front office and clinical staff. The software includes more than 500 reports so large practices can keep tabs on everything from total patients and appointments to financial wellness. We like how AdvancedMD also includes a mobile application that’s supported on iOS and Android devices, so large teams can access the mobile tools from whatever device they’re most comfortable using.

AdvancedMD dashboard

AdvancedMD is powerful but still manages to be relatively user-friendly. This example of AdvancedMD’s customizable dashboard shows a provider’s calendar on the left-hand side, outstanding tasks that need completing in “task donuts” in the middle, and prescriptions on the right-hand side. Users can tailor this dashboard to suit their individual needs. Source: AdvancedMD

AdvancedMD Pricing

Subscription Plan Price Features and Tools
Practice Management $429 per month, per provider Administrative features such as appointment scheduling, insurance eligibility verification, claims management and billing tools, credit card processing and financial reporting.
EHR + Practice Management $729 per month, per provider Administrative and clinical features such as patient charting, patient portal, customizable clinical templates, mobile application and e-prescribing tools.
Patient Engagement + EHR + Practice Management $999 per month, per provider Administrative, clinical and patient engagement features, such as telehealth, appointment reminders, check-in kiosks and reputation management tools.
Custom Bundle Requires a Quote Custom plan and pricing based on practice’s needs. Discounts up to 30 percent are available.

AdvancedMD Pros

  • Offers the most comprehensive slate of features we found in our review of medical software platforms.
  • Despite its many tools, AdvancedMD remains easy to use and includes helpful resources and training to get staff up to speed on the system quickly.
  • Custom bundles ensure that even sprawling health systems can build the platform they need, complete with significant discounts in many cases.

AdvancedMD Cons

  • One of the most expensive medical software platforms we reviewed.
  • Patient engagement features are an expensive add-on, increasing the per month, per provider cost by nearly $300.
  • Implementation is a relatively lengthy process that can take anywhere from eight to 11 weeks.

What AdvancedMD Users Have To Say

AdvancedMD customers praise the platform’s usability and overall performance, as well as the thorough implementation and overall scalability of the software. However, AdvancedMD’s customer support rating leaves something to be desired. AdvancedMD earned a 7.3/10 on TrustRadius.

Read our full AdvancedMD review.

athenahealth company logo
  • Starting Price: Sales estimate is required.
  • Key Features: athenaNet reporting on all medical practices in the network; ongoing consultation and coaching from dedicated account managers; strong library of pre-built reports and customization options.
  • Setup and Training: Training and setup support are included in the subscription price of the software. athenahealth has one of the longest implementation periods in our review, typically lasting about 11 weeks.
Editor's Rating: 9/10

Why We Chose athenahealth

We chose athenahealth as the best medical software for reporting because of the athenaNet, a network of hundreds of thousands of providers from which athenahealth gathers and analyzes data. The company uses that information to establish baseline metrics for medical practices of similar sizes and specialties, and provides consultation and coaching to help practices improve against these benchmarks. This data sets it apart from many of the competitors we researched, as it isn’t something everyone has access to. We also like how the software contains a robust library of all the medical software reports we looked for, as well as the ability to integrate Microsoft Excel to build custom reports.

athenahealth layout

Reporting in athenahealth is so powerful that data is displayed directly in the clinical tools as well. In the example above, a provider is able to review a patient’s test results over time directly in the medical chart without navigating away to a reporting module. (Source: athenahealth)

athenahealth Pros

  • The athenaNet and strong reporting library provide more data to users than any other medical software we reviewed.
  • Ongoing consultation and coaching are helpful for growing practices that want additional support in reaching their goals.
  • Reporting is integrated into clinical tools, giving providers plenty of information without the need to navigate away from patient charts.

athenahealth Cons

  • The software is not intuitive and comes with a significant learning curve; training is required to make the best use of the platform.
  • Pricing is not shared publicly and company representatives would not disclose pricing to us during our review.
  • The implementation period is the longest of all the medical software in our review, typically taking up to 11 weeks to complete.

What athenahealth Users Have To Say

athenahealth customers say the software is highly effective when it comes to reporting and, despite the learning curve, easy to schedule appointments, check patients in and enter charges for billing. However, users often say custom reports are difficult to create and dashboards lack customization as well. athenahealth earned a 9.0/10 on TrustRadius.

Read our full athenahealth review.

Tebra logo
  • Tebra is the most intuitive medical software platform we’ve reviewed, whether you’re working in your EMR, PMS or medical billing suite.
  • All Tebra EMR and PMS tools are available to all paying customers, regardless of the pricing tier selected.
  • Tebra lacks the consulting services common with other medical software providers.
Editor's Rating: 8.8/10

Medical software can be difficult to implement and learn how to use – unless you choose Tebra. Tebra is easily the most user-friendly medical software we found in our investigation, and even those who struggle with technology will face virtually no learning curve.

In addition to Tebra’s positive user experience, we liked that all of its features and tools are included on all subscription plans. Some medical software we reviewed limits features by pricing tiers, but we love that you can access everything Tebra offers regardless of the plan you choose.

In our testing, we found the Tebra charting and notetaking suite supremely intuitive. It felt natural to click through a patient’s chart and add information. Tools like the “Same As Last Time” (SALT) feature can quickly populate information without requiring providers to extensively type or click around. E-prescribing medications is as simple as pulling favorites from your library or looking up a new prescription through Tebra’s SureScripts integration. Tebra will also warn providers if any new prescriptions could interact with a patient’s existing medications.

We also liked that Tebra’s medical billing service will put all your claims through an internal review before filing and connect you with more than 8,000 insurers. As a result, you’ll have extremely low numbers of rejected or denied claims. And if your claims are rejected or denied, Tebra handles that too. Tebra is light on consulting services, but given its ease of use and comprehensive tools, we’d say it has you covered nearly every step of the way.

Medical Software Costs

Most medical software costs a set amount per provider per month. The exact fee you’ll pay will depend on several variables concerning your practice, so you’ll typically need to reach out to the software providers for custom quotes. In our research, we’ve seen rates as low as $110 per month, per provider and as high as $1,000 per provider, per month.

TipTip

Medical software often costs several hundred dollars per provider per month, so build clear financial projections to support cash flow when making such a large investment.

Most medical software platforms have several pricing tiers. Lower tiers may include just basic EMR or PMS features (or a small mix of both). Higher-priced tiers typically incorporate medical billing software, and the highest pricing tier usually adds revenue cycle management. There are exceptions to this rule, of course: Tebra is notable for including all its EMR, PMS and billing features with all pricing tiers.

Alternatively, some vendors offer encounter-based pricing. In this model, you’ll pay a few dollars per patient encounter. We found that to qualify for these plans, practices usually must remain under a certain number of encounters or claims per month.

Implementation and Training Costs

Most medical software vendors charge some form of setup or implementation fee. Some charge as much as several thousand dollars for data migration, implementation, configuration, payer enrollment and more.

In other cases, you won’t pay an extra fee to implement and set up your medical software, and many vendors also offer free onboarding and training. But just because implementation is free doesn’t make it comprehensive, so be sure to ask what the implementation process includes and whether training is involved.

There is another wrinkle to consider: revenue cycle management. We found that if practices opt for outsourced medical billing services, vendors generally provide full access to their medical software suite in exchange for an agreed-upon percentage of the practice’s monthly collections instead of predetermined fees. Learn more in our overview of the best medical billing services, which includes some of these providers.

Medical Software Features

Medical software platforms can come with an overwhelming number of features. Not every practice needs every bell and whistle, but there are some essential functions and tools that almost every healthcare organization should have.

Appointment Scheduling

On the PMS side of medical software, appointment scheduling tools are fundamental to streamlining your front-office staff’s calendar-related tasks. Appointment scheduling features can also expedite intake and registration in ways not possible with traditional paperwork.

Although appointment scheduling is primarily a PMS tool, you’ll also see it on the EMR side of most medical software platforms. Your medical software’s appointment scheduling tool should let you see your daily appointment schedule and appointment types. It should also display a patient’s status and location within your facility (or which facility they’re scheduled to visit). Some medical software allows you to track patients right down to the specific exam room or piece of medical equipment, as well as to check them out when their visit is complete.

AdvancedMD appointment calendar

AdvancedMD allows customization of the appointment calendar, including color-coding appointment types so it’s easy to prepare for them at a glance. Source: AdvancedMD

Billing and Claims

The PMS portion of your medical software tool should be able to post charges and create claims based on your EMR data. It should also have built-in ICD-10 and CPT coding libraries, alongside automatically generated E&M codes, that your billers can use.

The best medical software platforms should clearly indicate the patient and care provider tied to the claim, as well as the total claim value. Your software should also include claim-scrubbing tools, and many platforms have tools for handling rejected or denied claims too. Another critical function we looked for in our reviews is insurance eligibility verification. This allows you to check whether a patient’s insurance policy on file is active and up to date as soon as the appointment is scheduled. High-quality medical software enables you to check this information en masse.

Charting and Notetaking

EMR software should make it easy to take notes during encounters and add information to patients’ charts, whether typing or using hotkeys or voice-to-text. Your patient charts should clearly show the patient’s vitals, current medications, recent appointment history, medical history and other basic information. They should also let you easily jump to other tools, such as your e-prescribing suite.

CareCloud patient charts

Medical software includes clinical tools such as patient charts. In the example above, a CareCloud patient chart displays basic patient information alongside a toolbar that can drill down further into their details. Source: CareCloud

Customization

In your EMR system, you should have access to numerous templates you can use to take notes during patient encounters or add important information to patient charts. Most importantly, these templates should be extensively customizable. You should be able to modify them based on the appointment type or your preferred notetaking method.

Your chosen template should give you a quick view of the most critical information for your encounter and fill in chart fields as needed. If a template isn’t working for you in the moment, some medical software platforms will let you tweak it as you take notes.

Medical software customization also extends to PMS reporting. Many PMS providers offer hundreds of customizable, filterable financial reports; in fact, we suggest not choosing platforms that offer little to no customization on the reporting side.

Key TakeawayKey takeaway

Customization is vital for both EMR and PMS. Every healthcare organization has its own workflow, and your chosen medical software should be flexible enough to accommodate your practice’s unique needs and preferences.

E-Prescribing and Labs

Your medical software should make electronically prescribing medications a breeze. It should also give you the option to review a patient’s entire medication history. Most EMR platforms even flag potential drug interactions or medicines that could trigger a patient’s allergies.

Several medical software solutions also include tools for electronically ordering labs and bloodwork. These platforms typically integrate with leading lab providers such as Labcorp and Quest Diagnostics, though some of our best picks lack this capability. These standout products make up for this gap with the vast majority of their other features.

Interoperability

No two medical practices use precisely the same software suite, but practitioners often need to communicate with one another. Interoperability features ensure no information gets lost or misinterpreted in transmission between disparate systems. They also allow instant provider access to a patient’s medical data.

Interoperability is also fundamental to getting your practice’s vaccine and immunization data into the CDC’s immunization information systems. The Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs also have several meaningful use standards that practices can and should achieve through interoperability measures.

Patient Portal

Many medical software companies include a patient portal with their PMS offerings to expedite patients’ ability to book and modify appointments. Through these portals, patients can also request medication refills or message your front-office staff for assistance. Similarly, your front-office staff can use this portal to send patients their registration and intake forms, billing statements and payment requests.

Performance Management and Reporting

The best medical software includes customizable reports that can help you view and analyze all kinds of performance data tied to your practice’s operations. You can filter your reports based on numerous categories, such as provider, payer or location. With most platforms, you can also modify the period over which the information is collected and export your reports in several file formats.

Telehealth

As telehealth becomes increasingly important in modern healthcare, the best medical software includes plenty of telemedicine tools. Ideally, your chosen telehealth platform will fully integrate with your EMR system and PMS for easy notetaking and scheduling. In some cases, patients won’t have to download separate apps to start telehealth calls from their phones. This convenience may be useful to keep in mind as you browse medical software options.

Advantages of Medical Software

No matter your medical field, your practice stands to benefit significantly from the use of medical software.

  • More efficient operations: With medical software, you get scheduling and billing tools that expedite your front-office staff’s tasks. A combined EMR/PMS interface is crucial to medical software because it prevents redundant data entry. Other medical software tools streamline processes involved in insurance verification, appointment reminders, patient intake and more.
  • Higher first-pass acceptance rates: Practice management software includes tools to improve your medical billing, helping your team avoid errors that result in rejected claims. They can also keep your staff on track with filing deadlines. As a result, payers will accept more of your claims on the first go. And if claims are rejected or denied, your billing tools can also help your staffers address those.
  • Financial reporting: Practice management tools typically include financial and accounting reports that help you identify trends that are restraining your practice’s performance. You can use the information in these reports to implement changes that will maximize your profits.
  • Patient data generation: With the right medical software, data that a patient enters into your patient portal appears in your PMS as well as your EMR system. The time this saves your team on data entry and organization is immeasurable.
  • Customization and flexibility: EMR tools let practitioners take notes however they please in whichever kinds of patient charts they prefer. Practice management features present you with hundreds of customizable, highly filterable reports.
  • Quick prescribing and lab orders: Gone are the days of calling in prescriptions or printing lab instructions for your team. Instead, with the best medical software, you can send refills or lab orders electronically. This process saves you time and is often more convenient for the patient too.
  • Drug interaction alerts: A solid e-prescribing suite will alert physicians if they prescribe medications that could interact dangerously with a patient’s other medications. This function keeps your patient safe from harm and your practice safe from medical malpractice suits.
  • Digitized medical records: When a patient sees a specialist or moves to a new city, well-equipped medical software makes sending their medical data to other providers much easier. Interoperability tools streamline the patient data-sharing that’s fundamental to these transitions.
  • Patient requests: Medical software patient portals streamline the process of patients asking for prescription refills or new appointments. Their interfaces for doing so typically reduce the number of questions your front-office staff might have and eliminate the time spent calling in prescriptions.
  • Faster patient intake and registration: Through your medical software’s patient portal, you can send patients intake and registration forms to complete on their own well before their appointment. This feature saves your front-office staff time before appointments and reduces the time patients spend in the waiting room.

Choosing Medical Software

When choosing medical software, you’ll need to consider more than just a platform’s features. Other concerns, like pricing and customer support, should come into play, but you can balance the most critical factors by following this selection process.

1. Look at how much medical software platforms cost.

Medical software costs vary substantially between providers, as do fee structures. Some vendors charge a percentage of your monthly collections, whereas others charge a small amount per patient encounter. The most common pricing structure, though, is a monthly per-provider fee. In some cases, a medical software company’s advertised prices mask substantial hidden fees.

Your best bet for obtaining exact pricing is to set up a call with each vendor you’re considering. During your conversation, tell the sales representative how many users you’ll have. Also state which functions you feel are negotiable or non-negotiable. Ask the representative to send you a written list of the software’s features and how much you’ll have to pay for them. This way, you’ll know exactly what your dollars are getting you.

2. Determine the availability of customer support.

Rare is the medical practice that won’t encounter some sort of challenge with its medical software. When you face issues, you should be able to reach your software provider quickly for assistance. Likewise, if your platform goes down due to problems on the vendor’s end, you’ll need to reach the company for updates on when it’ll be back online.

As you speak with medical software vendors, ask whether you’ll have access to customer support 24/7 or just during normal business hours. You should also find out whether you’ll have a dedicated account representative or just access to a call center. The former is generally preferable, as someone who knows your practice intimately is far likelier to assist you adequately.

You should also get clarity on how much customer support access will cost. Perhaps customer service is included with the medical software plan, or maybe you’ll need to pay extra. Either way, get an answer from the sales representative in writing.

3. See how easy the platforms are to use.

Medical software platforms contain an abundance of tools and information, so it’s understandable if you feel overwhelmed as you initially browse them. You’ll feel far less confused if you choose a platform known to be user-friendly.

However, if you worry that even the simplest software could confuse your team, investigate your preferred software provider’s training programs. Guided implementation and one-on-one training are highly likely to help your employees adjust to your new system, though they sometimes come at a high extra cost.

As you compare the user-friendliness of many software options, you’ll notice that vendors organize their software interfaces quite differently. Some platforms employ dashboards that resemble social media feeds, while others function via drop-down menus. Still others make their features available through easily accessible tabs at the top of your screen. Think about which of these arrangements best suits your team as you compare options.

4. Consider implementation assistance and training.

Since even the user-friendliest medical software may come with a learning curve, especially if your staff isn’t super tech-savvy, we’ve included only companies that offer thorough training (though, again, often at an extra cost) among our best picks. When shopping for medical software, ask the sales representatives about the potential for training and assisted implementation and how much each costs. Get this information in writing.

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Unless they’re prohibitively expensive, opt in to your medical software provider’s training and implementation services. These services will reduce the time it takes your staff to become proficient with the platform.

5. Check for adequate EMR and PMS interfacing.

Good medical software lets you add information to your EMR system and PMS simultaneously. Check for this interfacing ability as you compare platforms. No practice benefits from a system that makes your staff enter information once in your EMR system and then again in your PMS.

6. Look into the reporting options.

A trustworthy medical software platform should offer highly customizable, filterable reporting and data analysis options. Reports should clearly indicate your practice’s financial standing and show you how factors such as how your practitioners and the services you offer are affecting your performance. You’ll see what’s bringing in revenue and what’s holding you back, and you can use this information to maximize your profitability.

7. Assess the fit for your specialty.

If your practice comprises specialists rather than primary care professionals, not all medical software will work for your needs. No medical software platform addresses the unique requirements of each and every medical field, and few medical software companies explicitly advertise themselves as geared toward a specific field.

To figure out which vendors are best suited for your specialty, ask other specialists in your field which platforms they use. Be sure to directly ask sales representatives about product tools pertinent to your specialty as well.

Medical Software FAQs

Medical practices use electronic medical records (EMRs) to streamline patient data collection and access. They also use practice management software (PMS) to organize and expedite front-office tasks.

In our research, we found that the best medical software vendors are athenahealth, AdvancedMD, Tebra, DrChrono, CareCloud and RXNT. The right choice for your healthcare organization will depend on your practice’s size and whether you’re prioritizing customizability, reporting, workflows or ease of use.

The cost of medical software varies. Most medical software companies will charge your practice several hundred dollars per provider per month. Other medical software companies charge a small fee per patient encounter or a percentage of your monthly collections.

What to Expect in 2024

Medical software has become the foundation of most healthcare organizations’ operations. Almost all small practices, large hospitals and providers in between rely on these services to provide a top-notch patient experience. This starts during patient registration and continues all the way to the final patient statement. Government incentives and penalties around medical software adoption have primarily driven this shift toward widespread EMR use.

Typically, smaller practices pay for a cloud-based medical software subscription, whereas large health groups may require on-premise systems. In both cases, a variety of solutions exists, and in 2024, advancements in both realms are expected.

According to research from Allied Market Research, these trends will push the size of the global medical software industry to $63.8 billion by 2030. This represents a 7.7 percent compound annual growth rate between 2020 – when the industry was valued at $30.6 billion – and 2030.

The Allied Market Research report highlighted the increase in artificial intelligence (AI) use as a major driver in industry growth. The growing population of geriatric adults, a factor that demands stronger recordkeeping and patient management, will also contribute to the global medical software industry’s growth in 2024.

As cloud-based technology expands, security weaknesses may result, so EMR data security is expected to be a priority in 2024. A patient data breach that the medical billing service Arietis Health announced in 2023 may fuel this concern. This breach resulted in the selling of patient medical information and Social Security numbers. A February 2024 suspected ransomware attack against UnitedHealth Group unit Change Healthcare may further drive cybersecurity concerns. Expect EMR vendors to emphasize data security in 2024 and encourage you to do the same.

Additionally, a recent study found that only 38 percent of U.S. hospital systems achieved three core medical billing quality standards. These standards were the timely sending of itemized patient statements, hospital legal action on overdue patient payments and patient access to qualified billing specialists. Since more than 60 percent of U.S. hospital systems failed to meet at least one of these standards, expect all these standards to be paramount in 2024. This notion may apply equally to hospitals and smaller practices.

Artificial intelligence (AI) is also set to be a major growth driver in the medical software sector. For example, some doctors have already begun using a program known as DocsGPT tool to streamline their writing of several certificates and letters. These include patient referrals, post-surgery instructions and death certificates. As this technology becomes more commonplace, leading medical software providers may integrate it fully into their platforms.

Generative AI-based messaging systems may also prove beneficial in creating direct patient care tools. Researchers at NYU Langone Health recently examined the benefits of utilizing Chat GPT when designing a personalized messaging system for patients with diabetes. The study found that this technology has strong potential to bridge the gap between technical teams and medical experts in designing patient care software.

Doctors and nurses can input prompts which take their nuanced medical knowledge into account. Chat GPT can then output explanations of what’s needed in technical development terms, so engineers can design a messaging system that benefits the patient.

Another type of medical software may become more prominent in 2024: virtual reality (VR). According to a Virti survey of 211 U.S. healthcare workers, 77 percent of healthcare organizations are using VR to train staff. Although the term “medical software” is currently used to describe EMR and PMS systems, VR software may start getting folded into this term in the near future.

We also expect an increased focus on transparency in the patient bills that practices generate through their EMR software. For example, Texas recently passed a law mandating clear invoices before sending patients to collections. Additionally, national publications have reported on a Colorado billing error that could affect tens of thousands of people. Medical billing transparency could well be one of the big stories within medical software in 2024.

Similarly, the Minnesota Attorney General’s office has launched an investigation into how the health systems Allina Health and Mayo Clinic conduct medical billing. Public listening sessions to get consumer feedback are core to this investigation. The increasing government attention on medical billing in 2023 suggests that, in 2024, using your medical software to power a positive patient billing experience is paramount.

In 2024, practices must also heed the federal No Surprises Act, which guards patients against unexpected medical bills. However, this law, which was enacted at the start of 2022, has already been subject to change and controversy. Two federal district court rulings have invalidated certain aspects of the act, and in July 2023, federal agencies requested that one court reverse its ruling.

An amicus brief was also filed by the American Medical Association’s Litigation Center with the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in April 2024. The Litigation Center has requested one of the federal rulings invalidating part of the law be upheld. It’s clear that the No Surprises Act will continue to be debated in courts as 2024 progresses.

Additionally, as of late November 2023, approximately 30 public companies have cited the No Surprises Act as a potential risk. According to the Biden administration’s February 2024 progress report, these companies may have been right. For starters, the three federal agencies that manage the Act are spending more time enforcing it than expected. Additionally, insurers were ordered to pay greater amounts to out-of-network providers than they would to contracted providers in over 80 percent of Act-related disputes.

All medical software platforms should be equipped to accommodate the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) final rule that took effect in 2023. This rule expands Medicare Part A and B coverage to include dental procedures that could improve patient disease and treatment outcomes. Knowing that practices will likely need to change for what, and in what ways, they bill their patients, we expect to see medical software adapting to ensure they are able to account for these changes.

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Max Freedman, Business Operations Insider and Senior Analyst
Max Freedman has spent nearly a decade providing entrepreneurs and business operators with actionable advice they can use to launch and grow their businesses. Max has direct experience helping run a small business, performs hands-on reviews and has real-world experience with the categories he covers, such as accounting software and digital payroll solutions, as well as leading small business lenders and employee retirement providers. Max has written hundreds of articles for Business News Daily on a range of valuable topics, including small business funding, time and attendance, marketing and human resources.
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