The secrets of how to get a patient portal up and running

First and foremost, the idea of starting a portal just for the meaningful use incentive reimbursement is most assuredly a recipe for disaster.

The single best reason, is to spoil your patient rotten.  You treat your patient as you would your mother, and you have the most difficult step mastered.

Keep it simple, only one staff member, and in a small primary care office, your nurse should be the portal manager.

The portal should be easy to use and intuitive, and link easily to your EHR, and of course be HIPAA compliant and record all activity for an audit trail.

The salesman has to be the doc, who teases out any interest at the visit, and explains the benefits of portal compared to snail mail, telephone communications.

Once the patient agrees to implementing their portal, the doc manually hands over to his nurse who immediately prints up the username and password, a cheat sheet on how to use the portal, and creates the account right then and there.

During the sales job, the patient is advised to check their device of choice after the visit to access the summary of the visit which will be available immediately upon leaving the office.  Save the email message conveying the office summary notice to the favorites on the tab bar for easy access to the portal in the future.

Then after reviewing the summary, send a message back from the portal to the office, to get familiar with the difference in sending and receiving messages to the office.

Once the patient finds the portal easy to use, and much easier than the telephone or mail for connecting to the nurse, bypassing the front office, so no more voice mail or being placed on hold, the portal will become one of the best features of one’s practice.

So, why listen to an internist from Montana?  750 plus and increasing portal users is why. 




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