Gathering Favorites Data

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Building favorites data in an EHR is a very crucial step necessary to gain buy-in in an EHR implementation. When done properly this can make all the difference especially with the providers. On those first days of implementation, we need to maximize the places where the system shines to outshine the challenges.

I have found many times the roadblock preventing this success isn't lack of effort or desire to do so. It often falls more into the category of How and the methods used. Often times the folks being asked for the data don't quite understand (despite our efforts to explain) the reasons and implications of the data. They realize later on what they should have given.

Below I have listed some of the favorites that would typically be collected in an EHR implementation and some good methods to gather this data.

Pharmacy Data

What pharmacies do your patients use? Typically this list is compiled in about 15 minutes by one person and is about 60-70% accurate. I have found that if you ask the triage team or doctors to leave the list open for a week or so and as they have interaction with pharmacies write the pharmacy down, the list comes back to me much more accurate. This one is fairly simple but works.

What are the provider's most frequently prescribed medications and doses? Again, if you ask the provider for this information, you'll get about 20 minutes of effort and minimal accuracy. You can ask the provider to keep a log for a week or so and get better accuracy. You can also have the provider ask the pharmacy down the street for a log of the prescriptions they have written for a certain time period.

Problem or Diagnosis Favorites

The easiest and most accurate way to gather frequent problems or diagnoses is to have a report run with a count of charged diagnoses sorted by frequency. I have found the "Super Bill" or "Encounter Form" is often not current and has items that are used regularly that aren't included and items listed that are never used. Interestingly, I have encountered several times when the coders or billers have been "fixing" the provider's "mistakes" for years and haven't bothered to educate the provider or fix the super bill.

Charge or Procedure Code Favorites

The easiest and most accurate way to gather frequent charges or procedures is to have a report run with a count of charged codes sorted by frequency. I have found the "Super Bill" or "Encounter Form" is often not current and has items that are used regularly that aren't included and items listed that are never used. Interestingly, I have encountered several times when the coders or billers have been "fixing" the provider's "mistakes" for years and haven't bothered to educate the provider or fix the super bill.

Lab and Radiology Favorites

This isn't always obvious, but ask the lab or radiology vendor to provide you with a list by provider and frequency. It is much easier than trying to sit down and come up with all of the labs and radiology that a group orders. Again, the requisition may be somewhat accurate, but not as accurate as the last year's data.