A ‘superior’ experience

Case Study | Joshua Medical Group
  • Glob and purple location pin

    Family medicine practice located in Palmdale, CA

  • Female Dr and male nurse

    A team of one physician, one nurse
    practitioner, and one physician assistant

  • Two Patient

    Fast-paced clinic seeing an average of  70 patients per day

Challenges

  • Time-consuming billing and clinical workflows
  • Lack of electronic faxing capability or electronic statements
  • Inefficiencies resulting from paper-based  EHR charting
  • Limited insight into the practice’s  financial health
  • Low digital patient engagement

Solutions

  • athenaOne®

Results

  • ~92% daily encounter close-out rate
  • Number of visits per provider increased  by 151% year-over-year (YOY)
  • Efficient digital workflows enable clinicians  to go home on time
  • Days in accounts receivable (A/R) reduced  by 20.1% YOY
  • 16.5% increase in average daily charges YOY
  • 92% collection yield realized in 6 months
  • 272% increase in fee-for-service (FFS) cash collection YOY
  • Nearly 50% of patients are active on the patient portal

“Pediatrics through geriatrics” is how Joshua Medical Group’s team describes the wide range of medical care they provide for their patients. After a decade with their previous EHR, the practice was looking for a modern technology partner that could streamline clinical workflows, enhance the patient experience, and improve their financial health. They found all of that — and more — in athenaOne.

Making workflows less complex and more efficient

Half of the practice’s medical statements used to be paper-based, and reconciling information across paper and electronic patient charts was very time-consuming and complex. With fully electronic medical records, all the information is in one place, including information from faxes, which are automatically distributed into patient charts. Instead of investing significant time and money manually charting patient data, they’re now able to invest time into initiatives that help the practice grow and improve the quality of patient care.

As a result of these simplified workflows, clinicians have achieved a daily approximate of 92% encounter close-out rate, a huge improvement from 7% on their previous EHR. Clinicians are able to see more patients each day, with lower patient wait times; they’ve seen a 151% increase in the number of daily visits per clinician year-over-year, but they’re more likely to go home on time now. 

This can be attributed to the fact that they have made great use of athenaOne’s efficiency tools which help them get work done faster, according to clinical director Andrew Holbrook. And clinicians know they can finish documentation tasks from home as needed. With athenaOne, Dr. Gonzalo Martinez, CEO of Joshua Medical Group, can go home and continue working if he wants to. “He really likes having that ability to decide when and where he wants to do his work,” said Holbrook. 

athenaOne’s digital patient engagement capabilities have also helped improve workflows for front office staff. Nearly half of the practice’s patients have signed up for the patient portal, where they can schedule appointments and make medication refill requests. “It takes pressure off our front office staff, because we spend much less time on the phone with patients scheduling appointments and reporting normal test results. It’s much quicker,” Holbrook explained.

Refining financial health and insight

One of the biggest wins for Joshua Medical Group is athenaOne’s smooth billing process. “Before athenaOne, getting the bill out clean on time was a persistent problem. The biller always had to be after somebody for information, since he didn’t have much access to it,” said Belen Martinez, office administrator. “The feeling of overwhelm is gone. Everybody is a lot calmer and more content with their workflow.” 

As a result, their days in accounts receivable have decreased by 20.1%, and the fee-for-service cash collection saw an increase of 272% from 2021 to 2022. The practice has also realized a YOY increase of 16.5% in average daily charges combined with a 90% collection yield. In addition to these developments, Holbrook says the reports and dashboards available in athenaOne give them a much better sense of where their finances stand overall, enabling them to make decisions that support their growth. “The kind of insight we have into the financial health of our practice is clearer and more concise than before,” he said.

Overall, Holbrook says going live on athenaOne has proved to be an excellent decision. Our customer success team is always available. If we had questions, they worked those out and took care of it for us,” said Holbrook. “They made us comfortable, and now more than a year later, we’re doing great. Every aspect of athenaOne is superior, from scheduling to billing to the reports we can pull.”

Andrew Holbrook, clinical director, Joshua Medical Group

 

*These results reflect the experience of one particular organization and are not necessarily what every athenahealth customer should expect.