Episode 71 - Ready, Set, Go Live
On this episode, Greenway Health Implementation Specialist Chuck McSorley joins us to discuss how Greenway helps medical practices prepare for electronic health record (EHR) implementation.
Hear how our team works in partnership with yours before, during, and after implementation to minimize stress and ensure success.
Joe: On this episode of "Putting Possibility Into Practice," we're talking implementation. You'll hear from a Greenway Health representative who works with the implementation team when a practice is ready to go live on a new EHR platform, some of the ins and outs of getting your practice ready for implementation and things you should know before going through the process. This is "Putting Possibility Into Practice." It starts right now.
I'm Joe Agostinelli, Social Media Manager at Greenway Health and welcome to this episode of our podcast, "Putting Possibility Into Practice". If you are a returning listener, I welcome you back to our podcast and if you are a new listener, we will let you know at the conclusion of today's podcast on how you can subscribe and receive notifications when new episodes are uploaded each week on your platform of choice. I welcome to this episode, Chuck McSorley. He is an Implementation Consultant here at Greenway Health. And as as practices implement new EHR platforms, and as we get ready on the road to technology and innovation with our next generation EHR and practice management solution, we thought it would be a great time to get with Chuck who is, as I mentioned, a part of the implementation team to go through some of the ins and outs of the process. And Chuck, welcome to our podcast.
Chuck: Thanks for having me, Joe.
Joe: Chuck, just a little bit about yourself and your background.
Chuck: Okay. Well, I'm originally from New York. I've lived in Tampa for 30 years or so now though, and I work out of the Tampa office here at Greenway Health. I've been in implementation and training on software platforms for about 20 years now.
Joe: And I would imagine really no matter the business, no matter the scope, implementation and implementing new software, I can only imagine a business or a medical practice in this case, probably a little queasy going into the process, I would imagine.
Chuck: Of course. Transition is never easy, and so we try to make it as...we call that the Virtual Interactive Academy or VIA for short. And those are classes that are run by another implementation team. And so it's a class where they can do some hands-on learning, whether it be the front office personnel about how to register patients, whether it's the financial team about how to post charges. So they're getting hands-on learning on that end, while the leadership at the practice is working on the setup. And then we do conversion as well. We work with the migration team here to make sure we get as much data from the old system converted into the new. And so yeah, it takes a little bit of time. It does take a little bit of patience but lots of other teams are working in the background too with making sure that that go live and beyond is gonna go smoothly for the practice.
Joe: And as we look to enhance the care of a provider's patients, we should just allude to the fact that as patients, not as they may be used to patients to patience ending in ENCE rather than an ENTS.
Chuck: Right, exactly. Right, the CE at the end, not the TS.
Joe: So what tips would you have for customers who are, you know, getting ready to go through an implementation process?
Joe: Well, there are a lot of them. So I think office leadership, whether, depending on the size of the practice, of course, should probably identify internal champions for each department. Who's gonna be your go-to person that knows everything about billing. Who is the person who's gonna know the most about the clinical aspects of the system? And sometimes that's the provider, him or herself, but sometimes there's an RN that's worked there for 25 years and she knows a lot about, well, we're gonna need to set up these orders and we're gonna need to set up these labs. And so that person should be involved in the setup as well. But we try to divvy it out so that the office manager isn't overburdened with always having to do every single setup piece. They should divvy it out and leave it to the expert because that office manager may be somebody who's really versed in billing but doesn't know the clinical side. So, you know, know the strengths of your team internally and use them during the implementation.
Certainly, communication with your project manager is, throughout the process is really, really important about, you know, if you're hitting any roadblocks, when you don't understand something, make sure you're explaining that to him or her and, or to your implementation consultant too. Every practice works differently. So when you've seen one practice, you've seen one practice. So and we need to get to know you as the team that's gonna be using the software. So the better it is that when we talk, when we communicate, that the better it is we're gonna be able to configure your system.
Practice at the practice is another real big thing to make sure that everybody is logging in and attending those VIA classes in time before the go-live. Or watching e-learnings because we do have some e-learning videos that you can watch as many times as you need to, to understand the process of and the how-tos of the end-user part of the training. So keep those in your toolbox and watch those ahead of time. For the office managers, certainly, do your homework and finish the setup before the implementation team is onsite for the go-live. Because during the sessions, they're usually broken up into two-hour sessions over web conference. We are showing them how to set it up and we go through maybe two or three, sometimes four or five examples of how to set things up. But it's certainly not the exhaustive time to finish everything.
So it's like, okay, we've shown you how to post, you know, post charges or we've shown you how to put in a new insurance plan into the system, but you're gonna have to do a little bit more of that while we're not on the phone too, to get it ready for go-live so that you don't have to scramble and get things configured while we're there for the go-live. So we do stress that a lot, you know, and I say that all the time, you know, you have homework to do, so please make sure you get that done before the next session.
And the practice manager will be also keeping on top of that as well through weekly or routine communication with the practice about how's it going? Do you need to still do this? It is important because there are times where if the practice isn't ready, you know, it starts to feel overwhelming. We may need to delay the go-live and so that could be something no one wants to do. So we try to get everything organized in time so that we don't have to delay that part of the project.
Joe: And as long as there's no delays, the day is here, my practice is...you guys are on site, this is implementation time. What's go-live day like?
Chuck: Well, go-live day is usually a pretty hectic process. Usually the project manager and the office manager at the practice, they have some sort of a schedule for us.
You're gonna sit with the front office first and, you know, it kind of follows the workflow or the flow of the patient through the office. So the patient's gonna see the front office first. So let's make sure that they're all set with how to check people in and get their paperwork ready. Then next step is to work with the clinical staff about when they room a patient, and taking their vitals and using the EHR for that. Then working with the providers directly about how to document that visit in the system, how to put in their orders and charges, new prescriptions that sort of thing, and then billing later, how to post charges and then send out claims.
So we try to follow that flow. Of course, things can be unpredictable and hardware sometimes doesn't work. And so there is a bit of running around throughout the office, quite a bit of times working with different departments about how do I do this or this seems to be not working right. So let's try to find a workaround. Yes. So it can be a little bit hectic but we try to keep to a schedule that the office managers put together.
Joe: What would you say are, you know, the two or three most common questions you receive, you know, before, maybe even during the process?
Chuck: Well for the end-users, for the staff there, we get a lot of questions about well, our system does this now, how does your system do that? They want to compare what's going on. And so there are a lot of questions about well, how do we post charges here? How do we run a billing batch? How do we print statements? Because this is how we do it in our old system. And those are really great questions because they're about adapting to the new software. They're about adapting to the new system. And we don't want anybody to have to feel like they are reinventing the wheel with Intergy. We want to learn about their workflows, their habits and adapt the system to those. And so it becomes more of an efficient process. And so we get a lot of those comparisons, how to do it now that we have a new system.
For the office managers, we do get a lot of questions during the setup about do I really have to do all this setup? And because there is a lot of building blocks within Intergy and I kind of compare it to like an animation movie where, you know, it takes three hours to set up a shot that only is on screen for 15 seconds, kind of thing. So there are a lot of processes and set up that then allows the system to be more automated for them. It will do it in four seconds, but it may take you 45 minutes to set up that certain feature in the system. And so I try to explain it kind of like that. That it's so resourceful and so adaptable to individual practices that that's why sometimes the set up takes a little bit of time because you're customizing it for you.
Joe: And we talked a little bit about this, but the training resources available, I think it's important and you mentioned it with the, with VIA. That's on-demand, right? So it's really, they can watch those on their schedule at their best time. There's nothing they have to watch, you know, a certain time on a certain day, it's always available for them.
Chuck: Right. Well, VIA is a class that they do have to attend. It is set a specific time, but we have e-learning videos that they can watch, which are also interactive. They have some questions and they have to do certain functions throughout them. So it's not a passive, just watch it. So yeah, so there's two different ways they can do on-demand with the e-learnings or they can attend a class that is hosted by a person to be able to ask questions to directly. So it's both. And we do encourage people to do both. Just don't do one or the other. And then what...we also have the, My Greenway website which is the, my Greenway Community is really helpful. There are a number of articles and how-to instructions through a knowledge base, a knowledge database there. It's really easy to just keyword search. Just type the word claim or type the word insurance plan and, you know, you'll get a dozen or so articles on that to answer more complex problems.
Within the software, there's F1 help, you know, and I don't, you know, that's part of every usual software system, but I really do push the use of that through my implementation sessions because it's not just passive. You can keyword search and find what you need, but there are also videos attached to some of the F1 help. Also including some questions, so it's like a quiz at the end to check your knowledge. So there's lots of robust and rich resources out there for people to learn about the software a little bit more when they can't reach us. Also if none of that works, if it didn't answer your question, we have an amazing support help desk. So people should call in if they have used those other resources but haven't been able to find the answer to their question.
Joe: So the implementation really doesn't end when your team leaves, does it?
Chuck: No, not at all. The practices are still under the project managers wing for at least a month after implementation. There are post-go-live sessions with us as the implementation team. Whether it be VIA sessions that they would attend a class with other practices to learn, or one-on-one with us to do things like insurance payment posting, how to send out patient statements, how to do their end of month reporting. All of that we do after the go-live so there is some data in their system to actually pull and look at.
So there are also clinical Q and A sessions that they'll attend, or billing Q and A sessions after that. So there's a number of calls that they'll attend after go-live and then people can still use the VIA whenever they want to. You know, you can rewatch, you can re-sign up to attend those classes as much as you want. And then there will be a handoff time probably like six to eight weeks after go-live, where they won't be part of implementation anymore. And if they have any questions, they wouldn't contact their project manager any longer. They would contact support directly.
Joe: Awesome. Well, for more information on the services that we talked about on this episode of our podcast "Putting Possibility Into Practice," I invite you to visit our website at www.greenwayhealth.com. You'll also see the information for My Greenway, our customer portal right on that website and if you have not yet done so, please do sign up and register for that and exchange best practices and learn tips from other practices who are Greenway partners and providers who are offering all sorts of advice that may solve some of your questions that you may have.
I want to thank Chuck McSorley, the Implementation Consultant here at Greenway Health, one of the implementation consultants here at Greenway Health, for taking time out of your busy day to join us on this podcast. I enjoyed our discussion.
Chuck: Yeah, definitely. Thanks for having me, Joe.
Joe: And if you would like to, we hope you enjoyed today's episode and we invite you to subscribe to our podcast on your platform of choice. If you have not done so yet already, we are available on iTunes, Google Play Podcasts, Stitcher, FM.player, SoundCloud, Lipson, Spotify, TuneIn Radio, and iHeartRadio. I'm Joe Agostinelli, the Social Media Manager of Greenway Health. And this has been another episode of our podcast "Putting Possibility Into Practice." Thanks for listening.