5 Signs You Need I/DD Software
by Core Solutions on April 5, 2023
Electronic health record systems are widely adopted across many settings. Paper-based systems can make it difficult to find and retrieve information, share a unified understanding of care with others, and develop insights from tracking and trending performance data. Overall, EHRs have significantly improved safety, simplified record-keeping, and enhanced how providers and clinical staff communicate across the care continuum.
Yet some EHRs work better for certain settings than others, so it’s essential to use tools designed specifically for the needs of those being served. For example, those with intellectual and developmental disabilities (I/DD) require different levels of care and services than hospital clients.
The best technology approach for meeting the needs of clients with I/DD is an EHR designed for these services. When weighing technology options, I/DD service providers should not only consider traditional benefits of EHR use, but also consider opportunities to best align technology with I/DD service-specific workflows and needed functionality. An I/DD software platform can often have many advantages over a more generalized EHR that’s being modified for use in providing I/DD services.
5 Signs Your Organization Needs I/DD Software
Whether moving from paper-based systems or transitioning off an existing EHR, consider the following five signs that your facility can benefit from I/DD software.
1. Getting information is more cumbersome than it should be.
I/DD software helps organizations serve high-need populations more effectively and efficiently. By automating and streamlining workflows to support optimal service delivery, technology can help providers maximize their efforts and better serve their clients while minimizing wasted time. Efficiencies are seen in process, where the right information is available at the right time, forms and assessments that are specific to the population are in reach, and in workflows that prompt staff to complete their next tasks. By tracking, staff can keep appointments and prevent missed doctor visits or prescription refills.
Other efficiencies are based on automating some of the functions often performed manually by I/DD service providers, such as ensuring I/DD therapy and services that are captured make it onto billing submission. The right I/DD software helps teams save time by improving data capture and tracking, freeing resources, and simplifying record management processes.
Unlike hospital case management, care management for those receiving I/DD services is often long––perhaps even years––and complex. I/DD software can provide a longitudinal record that makes accessing historical information, tracking progress, and setting meaningful goals easier.
Other efficiencies, though seemingly minor, save significant time when considered as a whole. For example, the right I/DD software can eliminate duplication by auto-filling fields and enable immediate access to the correct assessment tools. When software improves workflows and efficiencies, providers and teams are freed to focus on what matters most: direct client care.
2. Care collaboration is challenging.
Another consideration is the ease of communication. Many individuals are involved in addressing the needs of those with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Within an organization, managers, Direct Service Providers (DSPs), schedulers, and billing staff need to be able to share information in real time. Having the same view of records saves time since your staff doesn’t have to track down context or cobble information across sources. Mobile access also is important, as your staff may need to share records and provide services while in the field.
External professionals may also be involved in care, including primary care physicians, emergency department staff, occupational therapists, and physical therapists. An I/DD EHR enables interoperability, or the sharing of information with each entity in a fast, protected fashion.
Also important are communications beyond service providers. Organizations should also consider capabilities for communicating directly with individuals receiving I/DD services as well as their parents or guardians. I/DD software with a robust client portal that is intuitive to use and supports protected messaging and document exchange is important in this regard.
3. It’s difficult to create and maintain consistent policies and procedures around services.
On a national level, the turnover rate for direct service providers (DSPs) is 43%. More than 3 of every 5 of these positions will have to go through restaffing every year. With such high churn, it’s especially important in I/DD service settings to ensure consistency with documentation processes and have systems to guide adherence to best practices. An I/DD software system will keep historical data easy to access, codify workflows, drive adherence to processes and timing around monitoring clients, and ensure how you measure progress occurs in the same way regardless of the DSP. The flow of care and knowledge of past communications and services remains consistent over time and across different service providers. In this way, I/DD software can be vital for avoiding gaps in service delivery.
4. Your documentation for clinical insights and billing is not always accurate or dependable.
The right I/DD software will provide documentation prompts that help ensure records are complete and accurate and minimize opportunities for miscommunication of health status and service plans for I/DD therapy. Structured data makes tracking progress and measurable outcomes easier over time. Analytics can help the organization measure outcomes and identify best practices.
Ensuring that data is appropriately captured using I/DD software also can make it easier for the organization to defend fee-for-service billing. Accurate, easily retrieved documentation is vital for timely billing and responding to audit requests with minimal burden on staff.
As payment increasingly becomes value-based, tracking quality measures against payer rules becomes important. I/DD EHR use is vital for fulfilling documentation needs and modeling risk to determine the business impact on the organization.
5. Accountability for task tracking and completion is difficult to maintain.
Role-based workflows and automated task triggering of staff to-do lists enable staff to focus on delivering services instead of wondering what to do next. In addition, it minimizes miscommunications with others across the care team. As your team completes one task, the next task in the process is immediately generated and routed for completion. As a result, your team can complete assessments, build service plans, and verify task completion with new levels of ease. Having these automated supports also improves safety and compliance. For example, I/DD software can ensure medication management is happening with proper timing and accountability or that physician appointments receive follow-up.
Also, building specific service plans for those with intellectual and developmental disabilities is essential functionality for any I/DD EHR. It makes it easier to ensure each care need is addressed, from completing assessments with appropriate timing to coordinating occupational therapy and other referrals to eliminating redundancies. The right I/DD software enables managers to view task completion and the individual responsible at all times.
Looking for I/DD Software that Improves Workflows and Efficiencies?
Core’s Cx360 EHR is designed specifically for I/DD services. From role-based workflows to interoperability, you'll have the right technology to provide service more efficiently and effectively. View features or schedule a demo at coresolutionsinc.com/idd-ehr-software.
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