So you decided that now is the time to get on board and purchase new practice management and EHR software for your practice. You've set your budget aside and you're ready to start shopping. But, you're quick to realize that maybe the money you had set aside might just not be enough to cover all of the costs that you were expecting.
It can be tricky deciding on a budget before you start your search, and with the wide variety of software options out there for your practice the price ranges can vary. There are a few consistent things that you might have missed when putting together your budget.
Don't Forget about These Expenses in Your EHR Software Budget
Some systems require that you house a server in your practice in order to run the software. If you don't already have one, that is something you'll have to invest in. And, as new versions of the software are released they sometimes come with new hardware requirements meaning that you might have to upgrade the hardware you've already purchased for your practice. This can also be more costly if you decide that you need to add additional computers to your office and purchase additional licenses.
Software fees can be structured in a few different ways. For some software, it's just a flat fee where you own a license for a version of the software for as long as you'd like to use it. Others charge an annual fee for the software, and some charge a monthly fee. Once you know the price don't forget to think about the future. If your practice grows in size will this option still make the most sense for your practice?
Some systems will require you to purchase new versions of the software in order to receive the latest upgrades. But with other systems, upgrades are all just part of the package so you'll get the latest updates to your system as soon as they are availabe, and at no extra cost.
Add On Solutions
Depending on what features the system you choose comes with, there might be a feature or two you were hoping for that the system just doesn't have. Missing out on certain features might cause you to purchase add on solutions at an additional charge. These could be things like patient education, code verification, or patient recall.
Training & Support
All of the resources for training and support of your new software might not come for free. For example, you may be entitled to basic training and support, but premier level training and support might only come with an added price tag. It never hurts to ask about these hidden fees before you decide to make the purchase.
In the market for a new system? Download our free buying guide to help with the process!