OutSmart EMR Transition Guide for Clinics

This guide will help you better understand and plan your clinic’s transition to OutSmart EMR.

One of the questions we get asked most often is “How do we get started with OutSmart?”  This guide will help you better understand the various steps and things to consider once you have decided to move forward with OutSmart EMR for your clinic.

An important thing to note when adopting any professional EMR like OutSmart is that you are not only adopting a way to go paperless – your are adopting a workflow.  If used to its full capabilities, OutSmart will manage a large portion of your clinic’s daily activities; as a result, the most important aspect of adopting OutSmart is training.  Without proper training, it will be easy to miss out on some of the features of OutSmart can greatly enhance your experience with the service.

So here is an ideal timeline with regards to adopting OutSmart EMR:

  1. Set up your subscriptions.  Before getting started, you’ll need to figure out how many practitioners at your clinic will be using the system for charting, versus how many will be using the system simply for scheduling.  You can look at the different packages on our pricing page.  You will also need to know how many admin staff you will requires.  Once you have this information, please e-mail your contact at OutSmart and provide them with a list of all the practitioners and staff who will need to be set up.  Include their first and last names, their professions, and their business e-mail addresses.  You will also need to specify which subscription time they will need.  Our staff will then set up your subscriptions, once you have provided us with your billing information.  Please do not send credit card information via e-mail – call us or schedule a call in order to provide that information.
  2. Schedule an Account Setup session.  During this 30 minute session, we will setup your account and get your subscription activated.  We recommend doing this at least 2 weeks before you plan to use the system in your clinic.  This will allow us to set up all the accounts and also ensure that there is enough time to schedule training for all practitioners and staff.
  3. Schedule training for your practitioners and your staff.  Every paid OutSmart account comes with a number of free 30 minute training sessions.  It is crucial to ensure that your practitioners and your staff take advantage of this training. Ideally, there would be an initial training session, followed by a few days of playing around with the system, followed by a final training session before starting to use the EMR in the clinic environment.  It is recommended that the final training session be scheduled 2 days before the official first use if the EMR in your clinic.  To schedule training, contact our support team.
  4. If you are transferring data from another system, ensure that you coordinate this with our support team.  We can import data from a large variety of services, but only if given proper notice.  Contact our team, let us know where the data is coming from, and book in a data import date.  This date should be ideally the last day that you will be using your previous system.  Keep in mind that this date also needs to be set for after all the training is completed.  When you do have the data from your other system, please do not sent this to us by e-mail.  Instead, upload the files into your OutSmart Documents section, and then send us an e-mail to let us know the files are there.  This is a more secure method for you to send us your previous data.  Here are a few things to note remember about data exports from another software or service:
    • Make sure to get ALL your data exported, even data which you think you may not need right away.  Most of the time, when you leave a service, your data will be deleted, and you will not be able to go back and get it.  So ensure that you get an export of all your data, like:
      • Financial Records, Transactions, Client Balances.
      • Client Lists and Demographic information.
      • Medical Charting data, Prescriptions, Notes.
      • Documents or Attachments you uploaded, Lab Tests, Measurements.
      • Your schedule, both past and future.  Get everything, not only future appointments – you can sort out what you want later on.
      • Inventory lists, service lists, and all related data like inventory levels, pricing, costing, purchase orders, manufacturer and distributor lists, and contact information for your distributors.
    • In all cases, ensure to get machine-readable data.  This means that you need to get data in a format that another service, like ours, can read.  CSV or Excel format data is best, but Database files like a MYSQL or SQL database, Access Database, Oracle database files are better than nothing.  PDF’s are great if you do not need to ever import your data into another service, but are typically useless if you want to transfer data from one service to another.  So get PDF’s as a backup for your data, but try to get machine-readable data.  Most companies will provide the first export of your data for free, like we do.  But if you have to pay for it, consider that it may be worth the cost.  A PDF is little more than a photograph of your data.  While it may all be there, you cannot do much with it except look at it.
  5. Have a contingency plan for your first day.  Although we do everything possible to ensure a smooth transition, problems can and will happen.  Do not cancel your previous service completely.  Keep an overlap of about 1 week, so that if there are difficulties in the first few days, you can use your old service as a fall back while we help you resolve these issues.
  6. If you are transitioning from paper charting, prepare your paper charts for digitizing.  Depending on your situation, you may not digitize any charts at all, or you may digitize every single chart you have, or you may do something in between.  We recommend the last option.  It is not always necessary to digitize all your data immediately.  Select your most active patients, and digitize those charts.  Once done, you can do the rest as an when those patients book appointments with you.  Digitizing your paper charts simply means that you will be scanning them and saving them as PDF documents.  You can then upload those PDF documents into OutSmart.
  7. If you plan to use Merchant Processing through our system, let us know in advance.  It can take up to 10 business days to get your merchant account ready.  If you need this to be working on day 1, then make sure you tell us as far ahead of time as possible so that we can get that ready for you.

By ensuring that the above steps are planned and you have allotted enough time to complete them, you will be ensuring that your adoption of the service successful.