MacPractice, an Apple developer of practice management and clinical software for doctors' offices that use Macs, iPhones and iPads, announced the launch of MD 5.1, which features integrated HIPAA-compliant (Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act compliant) communication, faxing and reputation marketing powered by BirdEye.
Among the platform's other features, Scheduling Ability has been rewritten to boost speed and performance in the office, especially for remote offices, and the company plans to provide to its users third-party, online services with tighter integration and greater security.
Besides integrated faxing and HIPAA-secure messaging powered by Updox and MacPractice, the company plans to create and host a one-page site for $10 monthly.
MacPractice 5.1 has new user-requested practice management reports, with the company's preferred vendor for phone, text and/or email patient reminders being AutoRemind, which is integrated with MacPractice Schedule and includes automatic appointment status updates.
"Sending and receiving faxes in a doctor's office is not noteworthy. As it is commonly practiced every day, faxing is time-consuming, paper-wasting and just plain inefficient," Mark Hollis, CEO of MacPractice, told eWEEK. "Faxing requires scanning, copying, printing, waiting, verifying, filing and legwork—lots of it."
On the other hand, integrated electronic faxing with MacPractice eliminates paper, equipment costs and legwork, while it creates an efficient office workflow, Hollis said. Faxes can easily be responded to, forwarded, copied, signed, routed and filed in the patient's record electronically by any authorized doctor or staff member, he added.
"Additionally, while unsecured correspondence containing Protected Health Information (PHI) violates HIPAA and risks as much as a $50,000 fine per email, faxing does not," he said.
MacPractice's integrated faxing is powered by Updox as is MacPractice's secure messaging. Both services are available to MacPractice users, and Hollis said that over time secure messaging will replace most, if not all, faxing in a doctor's office.
The New Proposed Rule from the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) requires only that certified software have secure messaging capability.
Hollis explained that as faxing does not require the use of certified software, faxing will continue to be an essential tool for doctors' offices for the foreseeable future.
MacPractice has partnered with Transworld to provide in-application collection services superior to those offered by Web services that cannot write back to practice management software.
Purchasers of MacPractice receive $500 off or $1,000 off for an electronic health record (EHR) trade-up from now until Dec. 31.
The company also noted MacPractice MD MU 5.0 is ONC-ACB 2014 Edition Certified, and the company will maintain certification for MacPractice MD MU 5.1.
MacPractice's products are used in 31 countries, and developed and supported in Lincoln, Neb., while local representation, training and installation of MacPractice is available in the United States, United Kingdom and Australia.