Hospital Management System
A Hospital Management System not only provides an opportunity to the hospital to enhance their patient care but can also increase the profitability of the organization. These kinds of applications enable hospitals and doctors to serve their patients better. Computers are being extensively used for routine administrative purposes by health care professionals.
In veterinary medicine, hospital management software is designed for all types of practices, ranging from small, single-vet ones to large ones with multiple locations and vets, and covers a wide range of hospital administration and management processes. It is an integrated end–to-end management system that provides relevant information across the hospital to support effective decision making for patient care, administration and critical financial accounting in a seamless flow. Specific areas of application include scheduling of appointments, registration of cases including client and patient data, case history and electronic medical records, health care reports, reminders, inventory controls, reports and accounting.
- Reduces the time spent by staff filling out records, thus freeing resources for more critical health care tasks
- Appointments and scheduling of doctors helps prevent wastage of doctors’ and clients’ time
- Enables detailed recording of owner and patient information with search feature
- Digital data in the form of photos can be stored to aid identification of patients
- Patient history can be accessed instantly without the need for manually searching through old records
- Electronic medical record can be transmitted instantly for a second opinion
- Reminders can be set to warn about upcoming scheduled tasks like vaccination etc.
- Inventory control modules help maintain optimum levels of drugs and other supplies and track their utilization
- Instant generation of standard and customizable reports in tabular or graphical form can produce useful data for monitoring the performance of the hospital and its improvement
- Financial modules help keep track of the fees collected for various procedures and the expenses under various heads
- Better quality of care, procedures and service to patients
Advantages of Using Hospital Management Software
Features of Veterinary Hospital Management Software
Various commercially available veterinary practice management software is available in developed countries, especially for small animal practice. Some of the well-known ones are Qvet, VeterinaryGate Advanced, Bastet Win, Animal Hospital Management System, RxWorks, IntraVet etc. Most of these cost $ 250-700 and do not provide technical support in India. Further, they are mostly designed to work in accordance with US Government rules and tax laws; therefore, many of their reports are not directly applicable to Indian conditions. None of these can be used in Government Veterinary Hospitals as the data and reporting requirements are quite different in such institutions.
Some of the modules which are commonly found in most veterinary hospital management software are:
Appointment Scheduling: Every item of data that needs to be recorded about the animal owner can be stored and viewed in the Client screen. As well as listing their address, contact details and their patients, a wide range of configurable fields are available to record additional information such as the client's preferred veterinarian. The next appointments for all a client's animals can be traced with just one click. A financial record showing how much the client owes and when they last paid is also just one click away. It also enables fast printing of individual, personally addressed letters, account statements, forms, and more.
Client Screen Every item of data that needs to be recorded about the animal owner can be stored and viewed in the Client screen. As well as listing their address, contact details and their patients, a wide range of configurable fields are available to record additional information such as the client's preferred veterinarian. The next appointments for all a client's animals can be traced with just one click. A financial record showing how much the client owes and when they last paid is also just one click away. It also enables fast printing of individual, personally addressed letters, account statements, forms, and more.
Patient Screen:A record for each Patient is created covering everything from weight to the microchip number; from treatment warnings to current diet; photos of the patient and upcoming appointments. A summary of the Patient’s clinical history identifying major problems is displayed in a scrollable window and details of current prescriptions can be quickly accessed. The species of the patient will determine which fields are displayed - there are fields that are appropriate for a dog, but should not be displayed when you are treating a cat or a horse. These fields can automatically be updated when you bill an item. So if a client purchases a deworming agent from, it will be updated automatically without having to be entered manually - saving time and also ensuring consistency each time. An Attachments function is available where documents relating to the individual Patient are stored. The Print option for this screen provides for the printing of patient histories, information handouts, forms, letters and certificates. Each patient can have an unlimited number of reminders and warnings. A history of all correspondence regarding the patient is immediately available for review and/or re-printing.
Visit Screen: The Visit screen is divided to accommodate both clinical notes and the drugs and professional fees charged all in the one record. Extensive clinical notes can be recorded either as free text or in a more structured layout to suit each veterinarian’s. Various features like addition of summary words to improve consistency and make it easy to find patients with particular conditions, comprehensive ‘type-ahead’ dictionaries etc. are also available. Clinical histories can be enhanced with diagrams, laboratory results, digital images, x-rays, charts, sound-clips and Attachments.
Electronic Medical Record: This records everything that is found in paper based medical file and much more including - Contact details; Account balance and financial history; Patient species, breed, color, etc.; Key healthcare indicators; Reminders; Complete list of all past visits including Summary Words, Date & Time, Attending veterinarian, Medical notes in SOAP, HEAP, or free form, Weight & Temperature, Fees charged, Medication and doses prescribed, Charts, X-rays, Referral Letters, Forms, Photos
Financial Screen: The Financial screen presents details of each transaction – charges and payments. The data is presented in ‘bank statement’ format that shows the running balance of the account. Payments - cash, credit card or cheque, are individually recorded to facilitate the balancing of the cash draw and banking deposits. Optional receipts or invoices can be printed by reception staff as payments are taken. Direct access to a Client’s payment terms, bank details and any outstanding invoices is available from this screen. Within the system set-up multiple Account Types can be created for different types of clients who can be billed at different rates.
Reminders: Using the available templates, Reminders can be set-up for any Drug, Vaccine or Professional Fee in and customised as required. Reminders can be sent as mail-merged letters, postcards, faxes, emails or SMS text messages and their production needs only a click of the mouse. If required, lists of Reminders can be printed out for when a telephone call is likely to be a more effective way of communication.
Inventory Control: In the current legislative climate where full accountability of drug movements and batch numbers is very important, hospital management software delivers a comprehensive stock control system. The system allows the creation of stock locations with full transfer routines between them as required. Each item in the inventory can be subject to Stock Control where order trigger levels can be set that take account of seasonal variations and ideal stock levels. Orders can be generated either automatically or manually to the distributor, with receipt generation. Modern software supports the use of barcode readers and wholesaler electronic ordering, electronic delivery advices, automatic price updating, batch number audits, stock-taking adjustments and valuations.
Reports: The technical and business reporting functions are very comprehensive. Standard and routine reports can be generated at the click of a mouse and most include graphical indicators of the data concerned. Customizable reports with various permutations of covering Clients, Patients, Products, Services & Date ranges can also be prepared.
All the above modules will empower the veterinarian to manage the hospital more efficiently. Many other useful features are also available in similar software packages. There is adequate scope to develop hospital management software packages to suit the local conditions. In the days to come, the utilization of computers in hospital management will be immense and the entire gamut of hospital activities will be based on computer support.