More time for physicians to see more patients, provide better care, and live their lives. Physicians Angels provides one-of-a-kind EMR data management services to healthcare providers through our real time Virtual Scribe service.
Every Minute Matters: How to Get the Most out of Your Virtual Scribe Relationship
So, you’ve decided to make the leap toward more time and hire the services of a Virtual Scribe. Smart move, but to make sure you get all that you can out of your new professional relationship, there are a few steps to consider before officially getting things underway.
Before you begin, it’s essential to find a Virtual Scribe who has the qualifications necessary to make your life easier—the last thing a Virtual Scribe should do is add more stress to your life by falling short on things like communication skills, EHR literacy, and overall medical knowledge.
Training Sets the Tone
That’s where training comes in. Be sure to focus on training during your research phase of any potential scribe service. The investment that a company makes up front in training their scribes says a lot about what the rest of your relationship will look like. If they cut corners on training, or spend too little time in training and mentoring their scribes, they’re likely cutting corners in other places too.
According to an article by The Doctors Company, there is a wide variation among where and how scribes are trained. “In spite of the rapid growth and potential benefits of scribes, the healthcare community has generated very little regulation or standardization for scribe training, and researchers haven’t conducted any assessment of scribes’ ability to safely interface with the EHR,” the article states.
“Dedicated scribe organizations, which provide scribes for individual practices and healthcare organizations, may train recruits on basic medical terminology, note structure, documentation, and EHR basics,” the article continues.
Simply put, a solid training foundation is essential when it comes to getting the most out of your Virtual Scribe—and getting off on the right foot.
Communication is Key
Once you’ve found a properly trained scribe, or been assigned one by your scribe service, take a little time to get to know one another. This will help ensure the scribe fully understands your situation and your expectations. It will also lay the essential foundation for clear communication—even when something goes awry.
From the get-go, make sure you’re on the same page about how things will go moving forward. For instance, will you be designating a specific time at the end of every day to speak with your Virtual Scribe? Reviewing charts together every clinic day is vital for quality control of the scribe’s work, as well as rapport building.
Be Open to New Ideas
While there’s likely to be a transition period when it comes to finding a comfortable workflow with one another, it’s also important to keep in mind that your Virtual Scribe will be bringing their own experiences and point of view to the table.
In many instances, he or she has likely worked for a physician prior to being paired with you and will have helpful insight on what does and does not work when it comes to getting your relationship working like a well-oiled machine.
If your Virtual Scribe proposes a procedure or two that has worked well for them in the past, take it into consideration. You never know where the next great idea may come from—and who knows, it might just improve the productivity of your practice.
By reminding your Virtual Scribe that their input is not only welcome, but critical to the success of your relationship moving forward, they’ll feel like a valued part of your team—and a resource who feels appreciated will always be willing to go the extra mile.
Engage with Your Scribe Service
To avoid unexpected disruptions, talk to your scribe company about their backup staffing plan. With a solid pre-established plan, if the scribe you’re used to working with takes a vacation or falls ill, you can rest assured that you’ll still have someone competent to take care of your needs—all without missing a beat.
As an article from Healio News explains, engaging a scribe service is good for a number of reasons. “It’s a good option for practices without the time or resources to advertise, interview, assess, and perform other recruitment activities,” it states.
“Scribe services do all that and deliver a scribe who is trained in anatomy and terminology, often certified and may even know how to use your EHR. This reduces the need to arrange for additional training and speeds the integration of the scribe into your workflow.”
At the end of the day, the sole purpose of any Virtual Scribe you hire revolves around one thing and one thing only: taking some of the load off your shoulders. By keeping these tips in mind, you’re sure to start out your relationship on the right, time-saving foot.
Physicians Angels is the industry’s first Virtual Scribe company, providing real-time documentation directly into the physician’s EMR, along with Virtual Back Office services. Our services save the physician an average of 10 hours per week, thereby improving patient throughput and contributing to a better work/life balance for the physician and office staff. To learn more, visit physiciansangels.com or contact us.