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Peter Lucas | 

Digitizing the front-desk can expedite patient check-in for appointments by enabling patients to fill out intake forms online before arriving at the doctor’s office or to check-in for an appointment using a mobile app or kiosk.

CareCloud, a Miami-based provider of electronic health records and patient experience software, is aiming to transform medical practices from technological backwaters to places where patients can find web-based healthcare tools that mirror the user experience of other applications they use daily to perform such tasks as order food, book travel or reserve a hotel room.

“Medical practices need to keep pace with web-based technology to meet consumer’s changing expectations of how a practice operates,” says Juan Molina, vice president of strategy and business development for CareCloud. “When a patient enters a doctor’s office, handing her a clipboard is not a modern consumer experience. Making it easier for patients to interact with a physician and pay for services allows medical practices to engage patients in a way that is native to their daily lives.”

Central to CareCloud’s strategy is providing a cloud-based infrastructure to digitize a medical practice’s front desk and that supports open application programing interfaces to allow integration of third-party applications.

Digitizing the front-desk can expedite patient check-in for appointments by enabling patients to fill out intake forms online before arriving at the doctor’s office or to check-in for an appointment using a mobile app or kiosk.

The payoff for physicians from supporting web-based applications is interoperability between systems, the need for few, if any, staff to maintain the software, and lower operating costs. The savings gained from a cloud-based platform can be plowed back into providing better clinical support, Molina says.

“Cloud-based systems brings everyone in a practice together on a common, shared infrastructure,” says CareCloud CEO Ken Comée. “Physicians and administrative staff can access information via a universal browser rather than a complex patchwork of legacy systems, and systems can talk to each other via secure, open APIs.”

As part of its push to make patient facing technology available to medical practices, CareCloud recently introduced a telemedicine application that includes built-in insurance eligibility checking and scheduling tools. The HIPAA-compliant system also enables practices to accept patient co-pays and a revenue cycle management billing services module. Patient visits are documented in CareCloud’s electronic health records platform.

Rather than charge medical practices a monthly fee for the service, which can be upwards of $300, physicians are charged $7 per patient visit.

“The aim is to make telemedicine, which has primarily been adopted by large health systems and medical practices, easier for small practices to adopt, and simplify clinical workflows between practice management and electronic health records systems,” Molina says. “It also allows smaller practices to provide a better patient experience.”

CareCloud’s push to develop technology that makes patient’s and doctor’s lives easier is also driving changes to the company’s health records platform. Rather than offering a general-purpose medical records archive CareCloud is making its electronic health records technology customizable to the needs of individual medical practices, Molina says.

The latest version of CareCloud’s platform offers configurable patient record templates for medical specialties, such as ophthalmology, provides physicians with real-time information about how long patients are spending in the waiting the room to help speed patient throughput, detailed patient medical records and the ability to order, refill or deactivate prescriptions. The platform integrates with CareCloud’s practice management application and patient portal, which lets patients securely view the doctor’s appointments and charts online.

CareCloud says pricing “is flexible, and can be either a few hundred dollars per provider per month, or a percentage of collections depending on whether clients choose a SaaS or RCM model.”

“To simplify and improve the process of delivering and financing healthcare within a rapidly changing ecosystem, you need a technology platform that is flexible with tools as easy to use as we see in banking, shopping and other everyday activities,” Comée says.

Since taking the reins at CareCloud in 2015, Comée, who served as a board member before becoming CEO, has been directing the company’s push into cloud-based, patient-centric healthcare applications, which he sees as the growth engine for the company’s future. Comée is well versed in cloud-computing, having served as CEO of Cast Iron Systems, a provider of cloud computing software acquired by IBM Corp. in 2010. Prior to heading Cast Iron Systems, Comée was CEO of Power Reviews Inc., a provider of consumer generated online ratings and reviews and gamification start-up Badgeville, Inc.

Founded by Albert Santalo in 2009, CloudCare currently manages more than $4 billion in annualized accounts receivables.

In addition to re-focusing the company on cloud-based applications Comée has taken steps to beef up CareCloud’s C-suite, hiring former Allscripts and Validic executive Greg Shorten as chief revenue officer. In his new role Shorten will oversee the expansion of CareCloud’s technology platform.

Joining Shorten in the C-suite is Shari VanLoo as chief financial officer. Prior to joining CareCloud, VanLoo owned a consulting practice specializing in CFO leadership services to multinational technology companies and fast growth startups across several industries, including enterprise software, software-as-a-service, security, ecommerce, semiconductor and manufacturing. She is also an experienced fundraiser, raising more than $300 million in private and public financings, including the initial public offering of Legato Systems Inc., a provider of lifecycle management applications.

In late 2016, CareCloud received a $31.5 million cash infusion through a funding round that included The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc., Blue Cloud Ventures, and e-commerce technology provider First Data Corp., which powers the patient payment acceptance feature of CareCloud’s patient engagement platform. With the latest round of funding CareCloud has raised about $102 million since 2009.

Published in Digital Commerce 360.

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