10 benefits of working with a virtual scribe as a nurse practitioner

10 benefits of working with a virtual scribe as a nurse practitioner

There are many benefits of working with a virtual scribes as a nurse practitioner. Overall, virtual scribes can help nurse practitioner sign their charts AND leave the office by 5:00pm.

Virtual scribes benefit APRNs by spending more time talking with your patients and less time typing on your computer.

Virtual scribes can assist with other tasks (billing and coding, referrals, prior authorization, etc.), and allows you to have a more relaxed, fulfilling nurse practitioner practice.

In person scribes have been around for many years. A scribe’s job is to assist healthcare providers with documentation of a patient encounter and associated tasks.

Generally the scribe will follow the nurse practitioner around to each patient room, listen to the patient-provider conversation, abstract important info and document into the electronic medical record. The nurse practitioner will review the chart and then sign it off as the provider.

While in person scribes bring a lot of value, there are a few down sides. It can feel awkward to have one more person in the tiny exam room which can decrease patient satisfaction. There is a lot of overhead cost associated with an in person scribe: training, computer/supplies, benefits (health insurance, 401k, etc.), overall pay, etc.

While in person scribes are not a new concept, a better option may be virtual scribes. A virtual scribe is a person highly trained in medical terms and documentation. The person is remote and connects via video and/or audio on a computer or tablet. The virtual scribe will listen to the entire clinical visit and abstract any important information.

The scribe can have the note completed when the patient walks out of the clinic room. 

This is one of the benefits of working with a virtual scribe as a nurse practitioner. Think about it, staying on time during the workday and having all of your charts signed so you do not have to bring documentation home!

With many virtual scribe companies out there, it is hard to know which one would be a good fit for you as a nurse practitioner.

That is why The Burned-out Nurse Practitioner has partnered with ScribeEMR to offer nurse practitioners a quality, customized service to help you overcome nurse practitioner burnout and get your life back! 

ScribeEMR virtual scribes are dedicated to providing real-time documentation and easing the workload for nurse practitioners.

Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of working with a virtual scribes as a nurse practitioner.

1. Improved work-life balance. 

The ScribeEMR virtual scribe documents the patient encounter for the nurse practitioner. This frees up much of the time for the nurse practitioner. No longer will the nurse practitioner have to stay late at the office or bring charts home. Think of the positive impact a virtual scribe will have on a nurse practitioner’s work-life balance! A ScribeEMR virtual scribe eliminates hours of the nurse practitioner’s time!

2. More time with the patient.

It can feel disruptive or rude when the nurse practitioner is charting in the patient room. When we keep looking at our computers, it takes away from the patient-provider relationship. Nurse practitioners can easily be distracted within the electronic medical record and make it seem like nurse practitioners don’t care what the patient is saying.

Having a ScribeEMR virtual scribe document the patient visit for nurse practitioners means we have more time to actually care for patients!

3. Real-time documentation of the patient encounter. 

The Scribe EMR virtual scribe is essentially in the patient room with the nurse practitioner. This means the important information is being abstracted and documented in the patient chart in real time! When the nurse practitioner leaves the room, the information is already in the electronic medical record.

Nurse practitioners don’t have to sit at their desk and reiterate everything discussed into a voice recognition system such as Dragon. The nurse practitioner doesn’t have to dictate into a phone system and wait for the transcriptionist to type the information into the patient chart.

This is one of the amazing benefits of working with a virtual scribe and much easier for nurse practitioners to stay on time during the clinic day!

4. Virtual assistant tasks.

As nurse practitioners, we know the increasing amount of “other tasks” we have to do during our work day. There are prior authorizations, sending referrals, requesting medical documentation, etc. Having a virtual scribe handle some of these jobs frees up time for the nurse practitioner to actually care for patients.

Scribe EMR also offers virtual assistant personnel to help schedule patients, complete insurance verification, request patient records, and any other tasks that can be completed virtually. This is one of the benefits of working with a virtual scribe and greatly helps healthcare facilities in the current time of staffing shortages.

5. Ordering of tests.

Nurse practitioners know how much time it can take to put in lab orders, radiology orders, or nursing orders/communications. Virtual scribes do these tasks in the clinic room! No more interruptions from nursing, radiology, or lab techs wondering where the orders are! This is one of the benefits of working with a virtual scribe that many nurse practitioners do not realize!

6. Medical coding services.

ScribeEMR virtual scribes are trained on proper medical coding and billing. This is one more thing nurse practitioners can utilize and take off their task list and is one of the amazing benefits of working with a virtual scribe. The expertise of virtual scribes ensures the proper Evaluation and Management level is chosen and know how to add any additional CPT codes.

7. Reminders of quality care and core measures.

Nurse practitioners have a lot to remember when it comes to patient care, following core measures, and clinical practice guidelines. A ScribeEMR virtual scribe can assist with adherence to these core measures!

For example, a ScribeEMR virtual scribe inspects the patient chart and reminds the nurse practitioner to address immunizations, screening tools such as suicide or depression risk assessments, discussing smoking cessation, etc.

This frees up time the nurse practitioner would have had to review the information and increases adherence to following the core measures!

8. Organization and efficiency. 

ScribeEMR virtual scribes review the patient schedule at the beginning of the day. The virtual scribes can anticipate any needs before the nurse practitioner even logs on to the electronic medical record.

The virtual scribe also make note of reminders or education points for the patient. The virtual scribe’s role is to increase organization and efficiency, which creates less work from the nurse practitioner!

9. One virtual scribe per nurse practitioner. 

ScribeEMR pairs a virtual scribe to the provider. This allows better customization and attention to nurse practitioner preferences. The virtual scribes learn how the nurse practitioner assesses, treats, and documents patient encounters within the electronic medical record.

Once the virtual scribe becomes proficient to that nurse practitioner’s preferences (takes less than 3-4 weeks), and is one of the benefits of working with a virtual scribe! ScribeEMR strives for a strong provider-virtual scribe relationship!

10. Overcome nurse practitioner burnout. 

This is priceless! As nurse practitioners, we know how much time we spend documenting. The work-life imbalance and burnout caused by excessive charting affects our mental, emotional, and physical health.

As mentioned above, there are many benefits of working with a virtual scribe as a nurse practitioner. But overcoming nurse practitioner is most important! If you are looking for a solution to STOP charting at home, check out ScribeEMR virtual scribes!

If you have seen the benefits of working with a virtual scribe as a nurse practitioner and would like more info, please email The Burned-out Nurse Practitioner! I would love to help facilitate ScribeEMR services to your current nurse practitioner practice!

Erica D the NP is a family nurse practitioner and The Nurse Practitioner Charting Coach. Erica helps nurse practitioners STOP charting at home! Erica created The Nurse Practitioner Charting School to be the one stop for all documentation resources created specifically for nurse practitioners. Learn more at www.npchartingschool.com

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