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Dr. Bernadette Sheridan runs a busy, full service medical practice, Grace Family Medical, in Brooklyn, New York. Grace Family Medical Practice recently adopted athenahealth's practice management and EHR services to help improve their workflow and increase their bottom line, while still giving patients the personal touch they deserve.


[MUSIC PLAYING] This neighborhood is called Canarsie. We're in the heart of Central Brooklyn. My name is Bernadette Sheridan. I'm a native New Yorker, and I'm a board certified family practitioner. I've been in private practice for 33 years.

All right, have a good day.

And we have a full-service family practice. I'm very passionate about family practice because I think family practice is the specialty that ties everything together. A lot of the children that I delivered as infants, I take care of them, and I take care of their children, their grandparents, their extended family. And I get to see the position that health care has in terms of the family unit. That's very, very important. Because I think, as a nation, for us to get health care right, we have to start at the level of family.

This is a vibrant, dynamic, diverse office. We constantly seek a balance between working hard, doing a good job, satisfying the parameters that we have to satisfy in order to stay solvent and in business, and still giving the patient a personal touch.

Good afternoon.

Good afternoon.

One of the most challenging things is chasing the money. You have to be a good business person, and you have to have a team behind you, because gone is the concept, at least in urban medicine, that you can do all this by yourself.

Hello? Good afternoon.

I got introduced to Athena from a colleague. And I think the best recommendation is the recommendation of someone who's in the same boat as yourself.

Appreciate it. Thank you so much. Bye-bye.

So my office manager and myself got in the car and drove to Massachusetts and took the tour of Athena. I thought I had walked into Star Wars. I had never seen any operation like this in my life. And so we signed up with athena for the Collector.

The transition was not painful or uncomfortable. And whenever we had a problem, they were always there. The workflow is much easier because we could see where things are going. And the cash flow, we see how many days we have in Account Receivable. We see how long it takes to turn around a claim per insurance carrier. So we see where we need to do more work.

So how are you today?

Well, I feel pretty good.

Fast forward into the future, we figure that now EMR is beginning to be a hot item. So I started looking into the athena EMR part. There's a whole psyche about the EMR, how you now, instead of writing in a chart, type on a keyboard, and how you position yourself in the room with the patient, and all sorts of other things. I was determined to make it work. And if we did make it work, they assured us that we would see the fruits of what was coming out in time.

Be right back.

So we kept at it. And now I'm very comfortable with how the EMR works. I'm comfortable with navigating myself around the pages, and even better now that it's on my iPhone. If the answering service calls me that Mrs. So-and-so needs a prescription, I don't have to go home and look for my computer. I can sit in the car and do that and still have quality of life. And that, for me, is important. When the practice performance came out every quarter, we could see how things were starting to improve. It's clear that it was the right decision to make.

I tell my colleagues it's user friendly. You get what you pay for. They're always there for you if you need them. And it helps you get paid for what you do. So it has made life a whole lot easier.


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