Fair Oaks Psychiatric Associates (FOPA) CA USA

The growing Mental Health Clinic, Fair Oaks Psychiatric Associates (FOPA), is located in Sacramento, California and led by Medical Director, Dr. Janak Mehtani, a distinguished Fellow, American Psychiatric Association with more than 20 years of experience. The clinic employs a total of four psychiatrists, two registered nurse professionals and three therapists who perform 20,000 annual visits, averaging 1,666 visits per month.

As the practice grew Dr. Mehtani realized there was some inefficiency in the way the business had been operating. The practice was completely run on a paper-based system with each individual doctor using different formats to document their clinical notes. Due to the nature of the business there was a great deal of transcription requirements equaling a large amount of paperwork for patient history alone. This process was extremely time consuming, taking up precious hours in the doctors evenings and weekends. Not to mention it wasn’t billable hours.

Patient prescriptions were being filled manually taking considerable amount of time. Only after all the documentation and drug interactions were considered could the scheduled drugs be prescribed. This would take away time on behalf of the providers and staff, yet another area in their process with no way to collect for the time being spent. The patient was expected to fill out their complete history on paper and reviewing them took almost half the time of a consultation versus time that could be spent in a more meaningful way with the patient. The psychiatrist and therapist would spend so much time doing their own patient notes they wouldn’t be able to review each other’s, which was affecting their patient care. The practice was losing money due to not being able to review the patient’s proper eligibility and authorization before care was given. All of the paperwork and inefficiency was costing the clinic and more importantly, the patients, dearly.

Enter, ZH Healthcare and ZH OpenEMR. FOPA selected the web-based solution to provide a way to remove the costly inefficiency in their practice from scheduling to checkout. Within a span of 3 months FOPA was able to import previous patient data making the system current for every patient. The HIPAA compliant patient portal is accessible to every patient from anywhere through the web where they have the ability to review health records, make appointments, review their billing and even send emails directly to the doctors. The in-office patient experience was improved through a kiosks installed in the clinic lobby. The patient enters all their information, signs stipulated forms, and then verifies it. Thus, improving the visitor experience; saving the staff time, and reducing the possibility of human error. The time savings kept increasing when the ZH OpenEMR introduced the doctors to electronic records and the long trail of paperwork was a thing of the past. This quick and easy system saved the doctor’s precious time and dollars in transcription costs. The new system established a customized form that collects the patient encounter data also making note completion faster. In addition, an automated voice response system was connected to ZH OpenEMR that would make calls to patients with appointment reminders saving the front office staff even more time. FOPA now had the ability to capture signatures making billing much faster and efficient.

Fair Oaks Psychiatric Clinic has seen the positive results with ZH OpenEMR in their reduced overhead costs and improved productivity of their providers. Those positive results can be seen within the business and in their patients.