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  • IT Management - Private Practice

    We are working on transitioning to EHR, see my separate thread for that discussion but we are deciding between eCW and Kareo now.

    6 surgeons, ~13 workstations, usually around 10 staff members.

    Currently we have paper charts but billing and practice management are all electronic. We have 15 computers and 1 server to run this software. The company we have our software from manages all software IT security. We own the hardware though. Fairly expensive service contract with them for managed IT despite them not doing much.

    As we move to cloud based EMR we will no longer need a server and minimal software requirements besides the EMR. I am considering options for our IT needs.

    Option 1: Fully managed IT. Similar to what we have now.
    Option 2: Hire IT in house. Not a viable option for our office size, would be too expensive.
    Option 3: Pay per use IT. Could probably hire someone to set things up and pay as needed for issues and maintenance.
    Option 4: I could DIY, setup all the computers, virus protection, firewall, router. Considering this. I've recently setup Office 365 for our office and that has went fine so far. Anyone doing their own IT?

    What is everyone else in pp doing?
    Last edited by Mistborn; 01-28-2022, 08:23 AM.

  • #2
    I used to do all the IT myself with the help of my brother , who does this for a living. I would highly suggest paying someone and having them on a retainer for when things crash. Paying for IT is a cost of doing business. When the computers go down, everything stops. Having 16 people sitting around not doing anything remotely productive until you are up and running for me is personally more stressful than having a patient with a medical emergency in the office.

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    • #3
      Just this month got 4 letters notifying family that a group about your size had been hacked.

      Installing software on a properly secured system doesn’t count. Option 4 is out.
      You ruled out option 2, so that leaves 1 and 3.
      I really think for a business you are really talking about contract terms, not the IT professional. I think you need an ongoing relationship either your IT vendor. Whether it is a smaller monthly fee and usage of whatever, it comes down to terms and conditions.
      Just because you have a vendor doesn’t mean you can’t use another or you for simpler tasks. For example, you can use one for website design and support, another for workstation and a cloud application. Scope of support and terms. IT is infrastructure and applications.

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      • #4
        Setting up Office 365 in every computer =/= running a network in an office. I homelab for fun and can tell you you will wish to hire someone.

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        • #5
          We went from option 2 to option 1 a few years ago due to some increasing needs. Expensive, but we get service. Our practice is bigger with much more intensive IT needs, though.

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          • #6
            Interesting thoughts so far.

            Are you guys using managed IT with HIPAA risk assessment and such from one company? Or one company for IT and a separate one for HIPAA compliance work?

            What prices are you paying for managed IT?

            ​​​​​

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            • #7
              Our group pays for an IT guy but it's a lot larger and we have our workstations that go to multiple hospitals. A lot more complicated setup.

              I wouldn't volunteer to be the IT guy unless you like to assume 100% of that work and reap 1/6th of the savings.

              Sit down and talk with your current IT support and renegotiate the contract after the migration is complete. Not having to worry about your server is a big load off them and should be priced accordingly. You should get an enterprise-class firewall to decrease the odds of someone breaking into the office network. Our group uses Fortigate equipment and you need an IT person experienced in setting it up properly. There are other companies making similar equipment and you can go with whatever brand the IT person feels comfortable supporting.


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