New parents are excited about their baby’s journey across the growth chart and their growth from infancy to all the possibilities of adulthood. A centimeter of height now could mean sports fame later! What if your EHR had a growth chart pointed towards exciting changes too? Stay with us. Behind the continual improvement process at PCC is an EHR with a “growth” chart of its very own. The best part? You can see into the future right now and learn exactly how PCC EHR will grow. Even more exciting? By practicing medicine, engaging with PCC Support and education resources, your practice directly influences PCC’s “DNA”.
Continuous Process Improvement at PCC
Continuous improvement is a mindset at PCC that has been around since the very beginning. As PCC has grown since our founding in 1983, our ability to get better has improved how pediatricians can practice medicine for nearly 40 years. By learning what pediatricians want and need to treat their patients, increase revenue, manage staff, and grow their practice, PCC has expanded our tools and services to help make it happen.
For example, the PCC Learn database is an educational powerhouse for new and veteran PCC clients looking for quick answers to questions. What began as an online wiki has expanded: PCC Learn is available with the click of a button from the EHR or online, and now includes helpful videos for every EHR update so that you can see PCC experts navigate through your new suite of tools and components.
Another way PCC is consistently learning is by hearing from pediatricians about what truly matters for their practice. When you call a member of the Rapid Response Team for a question, attend our Users’ Conference, or call your Client Advocate, who identifies tools, reports, and customization options to make your practice run better, PCC is constantly learning how to improve and innovate.
Have you ever wondered what PCC does with pediatricians’ requests and wishes to improve the EHR? In the next section, learn how a simple ticket can lead to the tools and technological power your practice has been dreaming of.
How Process Mapping Happens at PCC
Process mapping at PCC aims to iterate on current processes and tools to make the entire wheel of pediatricians’ work spin more efficiently. That translates into the things pediatricians care about, like charts that open quickly, printable test results, the ability to toggle between siblings quickly, and even tools to chart your practice management goals.
To improve the tools and services we provide, PCC first identifies the needs and requests of our clients and prioritizes these goals by which will provide the most benefit to the most practices. Let’s take the example, “I want my EHR to run more quickly,” and see what it took for PCC to make it happen in PCC EHR 9.3.
How to See PCC Futures
Like an appointment in your favorite scheduling tool, PCC plans ahead for the work we do by scheduling it for a future release and then outlining how to get there, like a road map for the future. If you’re eager to see what’s coming next at PCC, you can see the items scheduled for future updates by visiting the future – PCC Futures, that is.
PCC Futures shows you what’s upcoming at PCC, from tools to help your practice get paid, to improvements that help you care for patients. You can check what’s coming in the future at any time on www.learn.pcc.com/pcc-futures. Don’t forget to check the “Deployed in the last 12 months” tab to see if your wish for PCC was already delivered.
The Journey to a Speedier EHR
Even an EHR needs a pitstop for performance upgrades! Once PCC’s development teams identified the goal of a speedier EHR for practices, they outlined the steps it would take to accomplish that goal. This required all of PCC to band together to answer all kinds of questions: how long does it take a doctor on average to open a chart? Is the rate different depending on server capacity, location, or other factors?
Once we found answers to these questions, we set to work. To make a long story short, we identified ways to make each tool in PCC EHR run at their most efficient, like the Report Library and patient charts, leading to better responsiveness based on a practice’s size.
This work, once completed, was worth celebrating, but PCC knows that “completed” doesn’t always mean “done.” It was time for the next step: plenty of testing.
QA, Testing, and Beta Practices
Rather than release updates as soon as they are complete, PCC tests – and retests – our updates so that when they arrive at your practice, they don’t interfere with other tools, cause workflow confusion, or break unexpectedly. For our performance update, we made sure that the increased speed impacted our other tools more like a high school track star and less like an excited toddler (as fun as that would be!).
The first round of “official” testing is by our QA (Quality Assurance) team for Alpha testing, who ensures not only that the new updates are working, but that they also don’t make any other tools or buttons malfunction. This is the first round of official testing, because our QA analysts make sure to test updates throughout development to make sure that things are working as expected.
Next is Beta testing. This is a chance for PCC practices to try out new tools ahead of anyone else and let the PCC team know if there are any remaining quirks to the improvements. If there is, we fix them! Beta practices are invaluable to PCC’s work, since Beta testing is the first chance that we get to see new tools “in the wild” and make sure they work in the context of your practice and patients during your typical busy days. We make sure to thank our Beta practices during every release for their valuable feedback and time.
Finally, deployment day! This is when the update is delivered directly to your practice and new tools or performance is available. PCC keeps a close eye on the updates as they go out to make sure that any hiccups are caught before practice doors open.
A Growing Electronic Health Record
The future has arrived. With tests complete, we released the performance update to all PCC practices – reducing some practices’ chart open times by half!
We aim to deliver some of the top requests and wishes your practice asks us for in every release, little by little, making PCC a better, faster, and stronger tool for pediatricians everywhere.
How do we know our tools will be helpful? We do our best to visit our client practices, to learn and understand how you use our tools and how your practice delivers healthcare to your specific community. For your practice, this means regular updates for improvements that matter to the work you do, and the support and training to make many of our tools customized to your practice’s workflows.
What does it mean to “continually optimize”? At PCC, it means committing to a better EHR, a future of possibilities, and the growing relationships with pediatricians based on trust and a common goal: to remove the obstacles that prevent pediatricians from practicing medicine.
Optimizing your practice of medicine might mean you’re looking to start fresh. Learn how to start a new practice and migrate the patients you already have with PCC’s Chip Hart and Susanne Madden, founder of The Verden Group. In "How to Start a New Pediatric Practice and Migrate Your Patients," they cover the preparation you should do, the legal terms to be aware of, and the success stories of real practices who started over to make a better start for their practice and patients.