Managing patient calls to request appointments, finding a date and time that fits the needs of both the patient and care provider, and scheduling appointments seem like pretty easy tasks to handle… Until you’re faced with different scheduling rules and policies in each separate department or location of your healthcare organization.

Decentralized scheduling systems scattered across all areas of your organization usually lead to increased scheduling errors, missed appointments, and lots of money down the drain. Not to mention quite a few frustrated patients and staff members as well.

Bottom line – you need to find a scheduling system that can satisfy patient and provider needs, build efficient appointment schedules, and keep up with changes throughout the healthcare industry. Cue Epic Cadence.

Let’s dive in to learn how Epic systems can help optimize your scheduling processes.

What Can Epic Software Do For You?

Epic is a cloud-based software as a service (SaaS) solution that is used across a wide range of healthcare organizations and healthcare providers and acts as both an electronic medical record (EMR) and electronic health record (EHR) system. While both EMRs and EHRs contain digital records of patient information, an EMR is simply a digital version of a patient’s chart that is not shared between practices or healthcare organizations. On the contrary, an EHR paints a more comprehensive picture of a patient’s medical history, including information from multiple physicians and organizations.

Whether it’s being used as an EMR or EHR, Epic’s web-based portal is centered around patient experience, clinical data for providers, and optimizing various other systems for employees like hospital lab technologists and insurance providers. With Epic, physicians can access patient charts, view profiles through their customized dashboards, and even merge their own notes with medical records – simplifying record access and making the reference of charts, notes, and records easier in the future.

What is Epic Cadence?

Cadence is the Epic scheduling system built to assist outpatient and specialty practices and clinics with the optimization of their scheduling processes. When patients call the practice to schedule appointments, the scheduling staff will use Epic Cadence to first book the appointment and then manage check-in upon patient arrival. The self-service scheduling software is customizable, allowing employees and physicians to see system-wide schedules or only appointments for their own patients. With its customized features, Epic Cadence allows for better engagement and organization between patients, employees, and physicians.

Epic Snapboard

Even better, Epic Cadence offers the Epic Snapboard scheduling solution – a tool that is configured to make managing appointment and case schedules a little easier. Snapboard Epic functionality helps users view appointments for multiple providers in one place, and it uses drag-and-drop features that allow scheduling staff to move appointments from the case depot to the main schedule in real-time.

With Epic Cadence scheduling and connections to the user-friendly Epic Snapboard, users can more effectively build and maintain schedules, increasing patient satisfaction, optimizing scheduling processes, and reducing no-shows and cancellations in the process.

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How Can Decision Trees Help?

Decision trees are algorithm tools within the Epic system that use information from patient records and appointment requests to map out a scheduling process that most accurately and efficiently matches patients to providers. Using decision tree logic can help align workflows from patients to providers and reduce the risk of error involved in outdated, manual scheduling processes.

Even better, by using logic tools like decision trees to outline the correct patient, provider, time, and location of appointments, your organization can reduce training requirements for staffing employees and managers – increasing employee engagement, information accuracy, and patient satisfaction along the way.

Epic Prelude .vs. Cadence

Now that you know a little more about Epic Cadence, let’s talk about Epic Prelude (and how it differs from Cadence).

Epic Prelude

Epic Prelude is an admission-discharge-transfer (ADT) patient registration system that allows users to track patient status from the time they enter the facility to the time they are discharged or transferred. Prelude also assists with the organization of patient registration in hospitals and coordination with insurance providers to ensure proper coverage, financial assistance, and documentation.

The Difference

While Epic Prelude focuses more on patient registration and status, Epic Cadence centers around optimizing scheduling processes and keeping up with records throughout the complete patient life cycle. On the one hand, Prelude uses real-time reports and analytics to ensure proper tracking and management of patient information and identity throughout the unified Epic system. On the other, Cadence helps improve scheduling efficiency, reduce no-shows and cancellations, and optimize overall organization scheduling with its simplified modules and wide range of schedule-building functionality.

Integration with Other Epic Modules

With Epic’s cloud-based nature and open-source integration system, individual modules, like Epic Cadence and Prelude, are able to be easily integrated with other third-party tools. And, because Epic’s systems follow the HL7 compliance requirements and guidelines, patient records can be shared easily and efficiently between Epic and other EHR systems with comparable functionality and standards – without any extra headaches.

Key Benefits of Using Cadence in Epic

It’s no secret that Cadence helps increase the efficiency of scheduling operations, but its benefits don’t stop there. Let’s take a closer look at some of the critical advantages of using Epic Cadence in your organization:

  • Standardized visit types (and streamlined scheduling processes)
  • More predictable and efficient scheduling and rescheduling functionality
  • Increased patient retention and revenue generation
  • Fewer cancellations, no-shows and re-visits
  • Reduced time to “Third Next Available” appointment for patients
  • Increased internal resource use (i.e., machines, rooms, labs, etc.)
  • Improved employee engagement through self-service systems and consistent scheduling guidelines and processes

Ultimately, Epic Cadence helps make the lives of patients, scheduling staff, and providers a little easier. Sounds like a pretty good deal for everyone, right?

How Can We Help?

Wherever your Epic needs lie, our team of senior-level Epic consultants is here to help.

Need an Epic expert to guide your team through a system-wide implementation of the Epic scheduling module? We’ve got you covered. Just need an extra hand monitoring new patient appointments, tracking the status of admitted patients, or managing scheduling processes within your Epic systems? We can help with that, too.

And, to help give you a better idea of what to expect when partnering with us, we’ve included a sample profile of one of our top-notch Epic Cadence consultants:

Surety Senior Epic Cadence Consultant 

  • 10 years experience as an Epic Credentialed Trainer
  • Ambulatory, Cadence, Radiant expert
  • MyChart patient portal foundation
  • 20 years of Nursing experience
  • Credentialed in Ambulatory, Radiant, Cupid, Stork, Willow, and a handful of other Epic modules

Interested in learning more about the Epic community or how our team can help you? Contact us today to get started.