What is the best cardiac monitoring system for a small practice?
Cardiac monitoring systems come in many shapes and sizes. From Holter to telemetry to EKGs, there is a system to meet your needs whether you’re a hospital or a small practice. If you’re seeking to add cardiac monitoring, upgrade your equipment, or change providers, you’ll need to weigh a few key factors and answer some important questions before making a decision.
Payment and Ownership Options
A popular choice for smaller practices is to utilize a service where the monitors are provided without a direct expense and only billed when the equipment is used. Patients are set up with the device and the practice bills the professional component while the cardiac monitoring provider bills the technical component.
Alternately, a lease ownership model has proven to be successful for hospitals and larger facilities. It’s a substantial capital investment, and there are additional staff responsibilities that accompany the lease ownership agreement. It takes staff resources for effective management, so if the lease ownership option runs the risk of becoming a burden, it’s not the best fit for your practice.
Another issue you’ll want to consider is the level of service you need from your cardiac monitoring provider. Larger facilities may not need any additional training or extra attention, so a company that services thousands of other practices isn’t a concern for them. However, a smaller practice might want to consider a company that will take the time to set up training, answer questions, respond quickly and makes their account a priority. A smaller service company will offer more personal service, open dialogue when it comes to issues, and greater flexibility in finding solutions. Integrated practices or hospitals are able to manage multiple relationships across different vendors, but a small practice may require a cardiac monitoring provider that delivers a full range of services.
Mix it up
Even if you’re comfortable with a single monitoring method, offering a mix of modalities is a smart recommendation. Begin with what you’ve used historically and work with your service provider to add newer monitoring options into your workflow. One of the most common mistakes practices make when choosing a service provider is falling in love with the newest novelty. Like a shiny new toy, it’s the latest fad with the coolest look, in the prettiest box. Unfortunately, it may not deliver the best diagnostic capabilities and you’re back to square one.
Generally, cardiac monitoring seems to work best when practices that value personal attention work with cardiac monitoring providers who can focus on their needs. Finding a provider that meets your individual needs and makes you a priority is the smart way to make your cardiac monitoring successful.