Blog Post

Why Experience and Expertise Matter for Rehab Therapy Software

When you’re choosing software for your rehab therapy practice, consider how experience, innovation, and an integrated platform can be invaluable assets to your practice.

Mike Willee
5 min read
April 22, 2024
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Old versus new: it’s a fundamental debate that has existed since humans started creating and innovating. And it rages on today; even as we’ve evolved as a species, the shiny new thing still has the power to turn our heads. Once we get over that initial rush, however, we’re left to wonder: is the new thing better, or is it just new?

The same goes for the software you’re using in your practice. The excitement around new options is all well and good, but seasoned rehab therapy pros know that substance matters. Here’s what you should be considering when weighing your options between different software for your business. 

Robust documentation tools

Documentation seems like it can be taken for granted when discussing software options — but if you’re not well-versed in the needs of clinicians, creating good charts can be harder than it looks. You don’t have time to work through inefficiencies and try to build customized templates on your own; you need something that works as soon as you pick it up. You want an EMR that’s tailored to the needs of working rehab therapists, with customization to include all the fields you need and none that you don’t.   

Simplified marketing for your practice

Finding new patients can be a full-time job - unless you have the right tools with which you can work. You want marketing software that's going to allow you to build an online presence that stands out from the crowd and helps convert those potential patients to booked appointments with landing pages and strong online reviews, and retain and reactivate patients with perfectly-timed emails and surveys. And you want that software to work seamlessly with the other solutions you're using. If you have to use third-party tools to connect your marketing software with the rest of your practice solutions, you're missing out on the simplicity and efficiency you need to fit marketing into your existing workflows.

Support for your billing needs  

Billing is one of the most crucial functions for any practice, and it seems to be getting harder by the day as insurance payers continue to issue new rules. If your software is leaving you on your own when it comes to the billing process, you’re left assuming all the risk of getting that crucial full reimbursement on all your claims.  That’s why you want a partner with the most experienced revenue cycle experts and a solution that offers streamlined workflows to maximize your reimbursement. You also want updates you make at the patient account to be reflected on all claims, in order to avoid downstream errors. 

If your software doesn’t have that expertise, or the tools to manage each patient and claim effectively, your billing team could be looking at lost revenue and painful rework.

A solid foundation

A strong practice isn’t built in a day, and neither is good software. It takes investment in security and compliance—the foundation of rehab therapy software.  

In light of the recent Change Healthcare debacle, you need to know that the software you're partnering with isn't putting you at risk of ransomware attacks or HIPAA violations. Looking for   

notable measures like a Service Organization Controls 2 (SOC2) audit or compliance with ISO 27001 standards lets you know that a vendor is serious about security. You want to work with a company that’s been committed from the beginning to going above and beyond the basic requirements to protect your and your patient’s sensitive information. 

You also need someone who will help you stay compliant every step of the way. The best software should constantly update for the latest Medicare and payer coding and policy changes and offer built-in alerts for NCCI edits, the 8-minute rule, and therapy thresholds.

Other software, on the other hand, could be cutting corners when it comes to security and compliance in an effort to focus on flashy new features. Maybe you’ll luck out and not have to worry about a cyberattack or a potential audit— but do you want to take that chance?   

Expertise and tools that tie your practice together  

Keeping your practice running every day requires a lot of moving parts—and if some of those parts aren’t up to par, your whole operation won’t run as smoothly as it could. You might have the best front-office solutions for digital patient intake (DPI), but if that information isn’t flowing into your EMR, it’s going to require double work from your clinicians. Your documentation might be a breeze, but if your billing software is a nightmare to use and isn’t integrated, you’re going to have a hard time getting paid for that exceptional care. 

You don’t want one standout solution paired with other subpar options; you want a full set of tools for every aspect of your practice, from scheduling a patient’s first appointment to billing their final visit, and a platform that connects them and gives you a full view of your practice operations. Other software might be promoting features that lack a key ingredient: the expertise involved to make everythign work, and work together in harmony.

Experience and influence within the industry 

Any clinician knows that experience is everything—especially in a profession as complex as rehab therapy. When you’re choosing software, you’re also picking the team behind that software as well. You want that team to have people who understand the inner workings of a practice and have built relationships within the industry to drive innovation and advocate for change. 

It helps if you can choose a company that was founded by a PT and boasts clinicians working in every department to ensure that the clinical perspective is always represented. It’s even better if that company meets with industry leaders and is involved with national boards to drive the conversation on big, industry-wide decisions and initiatives. Or, you could opt for alternatives that don’t have that scope of knowledge and experience and are left playing catch-up with the latest trends.   

Continued innovation

Rehab therapy today has changed dramatically in recent decades—and the pace of change is only going to accelerate as technology becomes a bigger part of healthcare. You want to choose a company that’s at the leading edge of innovation, investing in new tools and solutions that help rehab therapists in their daily work, and partnering with tomorrow’s leaders in healthcare technology. If you’re opting for software that’s always catching up to industry leaders, you’re running the risk of falling behind other practices. 

As you consider the rehab therapy software options on the market, consider what’s actually meant by “legacy software.” By definition, legacy software isn’t just software that’s old—it’s software that’s outdated. Yes, software that’s failed to keep up with the times and meet the needs of its customers isn’t what you want, but software that has fifteen years of continued growth and development, investment into its infrastructure and product, expertise on hand, industry leading innovation, and roots in the profession? Those age like a fine wine.


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