I am drawn to the old TV commercial
about investments: "when E.F. Hutton speaks, people
listen" when attempting to describe the respect
that Ruth Burke engenders among physicians who have
used her services. With over twenty-one years of medical
management experience (eleven of those years spent on
consulting, combined with nine years of teaching college
medical management courses), it literally pays
to listen when Ruth Burke speaks - particularly if you
own a practice.
Ruth Burke has interacted with a great many medical
management software products, including: DOMS, Medic,
PBCS, CBSI, Versys, IDX, Mastermind, Medical Manager,
and ProtoMED. Of all these PMS products, Ruth Burke
only recommends one - the only PMS product that she
can depend on to deliver the quality claims management
and service that her good name and well-earned reputation
Ruth goes further than just exclusively recommending
ProtoMED to physicians - she uses ProtoMED in the medical
management classes that she is responsible for as an
Adjunct Faculty member for both the Harford Community
College and The Community College of Baltimore County
(Essex, Dundalk, Catonsville, Owings Mills and Hunt
Valley campuses). Ruth has published a workbook entitled:
"Understanding Health Insurance - A Guide to Professional
Billing". The workbook (used nationally) was designed
by Ruth to accompany the course textbook. Every new
semester, Ruth and her associate instructors, begin
five new classes of medical management novices - all
using ProtoMED. ProtoMED's intuitive design is so easy
to use that students can focus on the medical management
concepts of the coursework without being overwhelmed
by learning a new software product.
Proto: You've chosen ProtoMED
as the primary teaching tool for your Practice Management
courses - why?
Burke: I could see that the design made it easy for
my students to learn. I was BLOWN AWAY when I saw the
demonstration - I could not believe all the technology
features that ProtoMED had. Your system did all the
things that I had previously said "boy I wish I
could do this" with regards to other systems.
pick up on ProtoMED INSTANTLY - it has an incredibly
small learning curve compared to any other PMS products.
In the first three nights my students usually have patients,
charges, and payments down solid - impossible with other
Proto: How did you discover
Burke: ProtoMED was demonstrating at an MGMA meeting
over three years ago.
I needed a software company that I could recommend to
my doctors. I was not at all satisfied with the local
company that most of my clients were using.
I also admire the ProtoMED staff - I enjoy the passion
that everyone has for the ProtoMED product. It was evident
that ProtoMED had a commitment to service unmatched
I've since recommended ProtoMED to clients with incredibly
favorable results - everyone is always pleased with
my recommendations - for example, every time I see the
manager from this one particular office that I recommended,
the first words she tells me when I come in the door
are: "I LOVE PROTOMED!"
Proto: Could you list some
of your favorite ProtoMED features?
Burke: Ruth needed no time to "think" about
a response to this question - she rattled off a list
of features, but more importantly, gave examples of
why these features are so important to her:
Easy Learning Curve
on the list is probably an abused term regarding software,
but its such a big item with ProtoMED - your software
is incredibly USER-FRIENDLY. No other PMS can compare
to ProtoMED's easy learning curve and intuitive lookup
and charge processing features.
can configure things yourself - "no rocket science
degree required". As a consultant I've been restricted
from accomplishing tasks due to "software issues"
on other PMS products - example: I was consulting in
a Medical Manager office and I needed to have the encounter
form adjusted to allow for printing of co-pay. We called
for support and I was told that this request could be
done - but that it would cost thousands for "custom
configuration". With ProtoMED, we just go into
the encounter form design screen and add the field!
Efficient EOB Posting
unique payment posting routines make it almost impossible
to mess up payment posting - you'll always know when
you've made a mistake because the remaining balance
on the EOB will not be zeroed out!
system is useless without someone there to help you
use it - with ProtoMED, someone is always there!
As a consultant, support is a big issue. Most of these
companies require you to leave a message and they get
back to you the next day - you can't do that when you
are a consultant - you're not there the next day! ProtoMED
always answers my questions - immediately - with such
a friendly and helpful support team. Plus, I can monitor
my client's support calls and electronic claims volume
over the Internet - from my home.
not uncommon to see a year's worth of un-worked claims
in offices that I'm called to assist - I've actually
seen two years worth of un-worked claims at one practice!
The reason for a lot of this is due to the time constraints
imposed on an over-worked staff and how labor-intensive
the process of working claims is. ProtoMED overcomes
this problem with your new Claims Manager - It's a big
help in working claims and monitoring staff progress
with regards to working claims.
Co-payment and "front
desk issues are the bane of many practices - over-the-counter
payments improperly processed, co-pays remain uncollected,
etc. ProtoMED enables co-pay collection with a simple
"click" from the schedule. Afterwards, once
the charge is entered, the co-pay is automatically applied
- so easy - so efficient.
I once wanted to improve the front desk by attempting
to collect the full patient balance. I was told by the
practice's PMS vendor that they could only print the
total balance - not just the patient balance. ProtoMED
provides a complete aged breakdown of both insurance
and patient balances with the push of a button - directly
from the scheduler.
Proto: How did you get
into medical management consulting?
Burke: At the time, I was managing a pediatrician practice.
My doctor would "lend me out" to fellow physicians
to get them up and running. My choices of practice management
systems and successful track record got the attention
of a large consulting firm that "made me an offer
that I couldn't resist". The firm began abandoning
the "small doctors" in favor of larger hospital
accounts - I was told "there was no market for
consulting services for the small doctors." In
my opinion, the smaller practices need me the most!
I've been working with individual doctors since I was
fifteen - I have a kindred spirit with them - a passion
to help them make the money that they deserve to make.
The decision to go out on my own and stay with "the
small doctors" was an easy decision to make - and
I've never looked back.
Proto: Could you tell us something
about the stay-at-home mom's billing group that you
Burke: When I was with the consulting group, I'd see
all these women who would have to leave their children
to come into an office to perform work that they could
easily accomplish from home. I got this idea of establishing
this pool of highly qualified billers that could stay
with their children and work from home. It was from
this idea that I formed the Independent Medical Billers
Alliance (IMBA) over eight years ago. Everyone is their
own independent billing agency, but they must attend
monthly IMBA meetings. Meetings are held in everyone's
homes - women can bring their children.
We identify women billers who "want to come home".
We make sure they are trained to meet our high standards
- training is free of charge. We then find a new client
for the new recruit and set her up - no fees - no strings
attached - it's the IMBA mission - we consider it our
ministry to bring women home to work.
Protologics is grateful to Ruth Burke for her endorsement,
her energy, and the time that she gave us for this interview.
ProtoFEATURES are NOT paid endorsements
- features are either informational in nature, or candid
interviews of successful ProtoMED clients and are presented
to promote the exchange of ideas within the online ProtoMED
Us! ProtoMED User's Conference
The Maryland MGMA is hosting a Technology Fair this
March and has invited ProtoMED to use the Tech Fair
as an opportunity to host our own user's
conference. We hope that you can find time to attend
this important ProtoMED users conference. Out-of-state
clients can stay at the BWI Holiday Inn and get an MGMA
discounted room rate. Protologics will reimburse
the registration fee for the first fifty ProtoMED users
group attendees. Furthermore, Protologics shall
give away ten MD MGMA memberships!
Friday, March 28
7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
BWI Holiday Inn
$25 per person registration fee required - first fifty
ProtoMED clients to sign-in for the user's group meeting
will be reimbursed for their registration fee!
Registration includes: full-event access to the exhibition
hall, continental breakfast, box lunch. Join us for:
Users Conference - separate breakout session for
the newest technological advances to streamline practice
functionality, including networking and connectivity,
application software platforms, EMRs, PDAs, reminder-call
systems and coding software
out vendors for answers to your critical issues and
concerns, such as privacy and HIPAA compliance
special speaker sessions
a preview of ProtoMED version 4.4 and ProtoCHART
- 2002 Grand Prize Award
- 2003 Announcement (attendees get 1000 bonus points)
fifty ProtoMED clients on the ProtoMED user group registry
will be reimbursed for their registration fee
Protologics and MediNotes Announce
ProtoCHART Electronic Medical Record
Protologics Corporation, a Maryland PMS company with
installations in ten states, and MediNotes Corporation,
an Iowa EMR vendor with installations nationwide, announce
an agreement to produce ProtoCHART - an Electronic Medical
Record with seamless integration into the ProtoMED practice
management system. The OEM agreement takes the MediNotes
Charting Plus EMR product and re-works it for integration
into the ProtoMED practice management product.
was selected for its vast knowledge base, ease of use,
Windows platform, relational database, WYSIWYG templates,
and E&M coding wizard. Medically reviewed specialty
templates are available for: Primary Care, OB-GYN, Ophthalmology,
Optometry, Neurology, Dermatology, Orthopedics, and
Cardiology. The EMR software also employs a graphical
engine that enables pointing to the body part to be
documented. Layers of pointing take the user deeper
and deeper into body, down to distinct organs and skeletal
The ProtoCHART EMR product allows for seamless integration
of patient demographics from ProtoMED and billing information
from the clinical record. While billing information
is provided during the patient encounter by the EMR,
charges can be reviewed by the billing team before being
posted to a patient's account. ProtoCHART employs the
best of both worlds - real-time, compliant coding from
the EMR and batch review by the practice billing team
- all with minimal data entry.
ProtoCHART is now available for purchase. The EMR product
is compatible with ProtoMED Practice Manager, version
4.4. Demonstrations are available now - call Protologics
at 800-648-4836 to request a demonstration, or Email
& My Tablet - A New Way Of Doing Business!
The other day I was
demonstrating ProtoCHART on our wireless pen tablet
and I decided to introduce myself to some other practices
in the building. Before walking into the waiting room,
I tapped the screen on my tablet and wrote the name
of the doctor in my own handwriting into the tablet.
Instantly the handwriting disappeared and typed text
appeared in my contact field in the system.
I walked into the waiting room holding the tablet which
is about as big as a piece of paper (except it is about
an inch thick). Before I even got a chance to introduce
myself, one of the staff blurted out "What is that?
Is that a computer? Can I play games
I informed them that in fact it was a computer ( 30
gigabyte hard drive and a 1gigahertz processor ) and
that it does everything any other computer does, except
more. It comes with built in handwriting and voice
recognition software, and a wireless networking
card so it will fit right in to any LAN with a wirleless
hub. "Better yet it can be loaded with ProtoCHART
and ProtoMED and provide seamless integration of clinical
records and practice management." - had to get
"the pitch in", after-all, I was there to
Needless to say I have had a great deal of success
finding people who are interested in seeing demonstrations.
I've even written a few contracts on the spot. Personally,
I am most impressed with how well received the ProtoCHART
software has been. From single a doctor to 600+ doctor
practice, the response is consistent "ProtoCHART
is the best Electronic Medical Records Solution I have
seen so far". Operating on a completely wireless
pen tablet, ProtoCHART offers a real time point-of-care
note taking and chart access. Doctors can even take
the tablet home with them to complete charts and re-synch
with the main system the next day!
Doctors love the fact that the software comes pre-loaded
with specialty based note templates, and that they have
the flexibility to change the existing templates or
make new ones quickly and easily. It offers the perfect
medium between a turnkey and custom solution.
It is so flexible and simple, that I have created note
templates for my sales calls and simply tap the screen
to collect all pertinent practice information from my
conversations with prospects.
I love demonstrating this product - give us a call
at 800-648-4836, or contact us via Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
. We will be happy to show you that the answer to
your clinical records nightmare is no longer the stuff
dreams are made of! Its here, its now - its ProtoCHART!
N.E. Regional Sales Manager
Over the last year, ProtoMED has
been working to take even more strides as a leader in
practice management software. We are eagerly anticipating
a March/April release of ProtoMED 4.4. Here is a brief
list of new and improved features:
NEW! ProtoCHART Electronic Medical Records,
complete with seamless interface into ProtoMED for both
patient demographics and billing.
NEW! Electronic Remittance Advice which
automatically posts your insurance payments for you
NEW! E-Statements send your patient statements
through the ProtoCLAIMS clearinghouse and directly to
the post office! All printing, stuffing, and mailing
is done for you with one "click"!
CPT Codes and Diagnosis Codes for 2003.
numbers now print in block 33.
and improved reports including: Patient List By Diagnosis
Codes, Visits By CPT Code, Summary A/R and Detail A/R.
NEW! Clinical notes archival screen available
from the ProtoMED patient demographics screen.
Universal Referral Form that no longer requires an authorization
Claims Manager features.
We will continue to keep you posted the 4.4 ship date.
To keep up-to-date on the status of our release, be
sure to check out our website, www.protomed.com and
future editions of our ProtoViews online newsletter.
Don't forget to attend the Maryland MGMA Tech Fair,
March 28th , at the Baltimore Washington International
Airport Holiday Inn - ProtoMED is hosting its Users
Conference. Come see 4.4 features and the new ProtoCHART
EMR product. A user's design meeting will also take
place - here's your opportunity to get the "special
feature that you would like to see" into the design
process. Hope to see you there!