Recently, I attended The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) meeting as both a board-certified plastic surgeon attendee and as a plastic surgery software vendor. I had the relatively uncommon experience of canvassing the exhibit hall floor as both a salesperson and a prospective client for other vendors. Because I wear these two hats, this special perspective on what it means to develop software for, and market to, my colleagues, enables me to help create a specialty-specific electronic medical record (EMR) system that is superior to other EMR systems currently on the market.
After several days of wandering among vendor displays, chatting with representatives from implant companies and salespeople for the latest “lotions and potions,” as well as demoing Modernizing Medicine’s Electronic Medical Assistant® (EMA™) in the Modernizing Medicine booth, I learned two valuable lessons:
- I should wear more comfortable shoes when working the exhibit hall.
- Selling is hard work.
Selling, or, more properly stated, marketing, to one’s colleagues requires a delicate balance between understanding what we as plastic surgeons want and need in a software solution for our offices (our “Pain Points” in the parlance of marketing) and what makes sense for a software company to build (how quickly, with what feature sets, for which niches, with which strategic alliance partners, etc.). In fact, one aspect that attracted me to my role at Modernizing Medicine as Medical Director for EMA Plastic Surgery and EMA Cosmetic is the company’s strategic decision to utilize physician specialists to build the domain-specific content for each product line. This has propelled EMA Dermatology™ to become one of the best EMR systems in the dermatology market in a few short years and has helped catalyze the company’s dramatic business growth curve. More importantly, physician leadership effectively positions Modernizing Medicine as an industry leader in specialty-specific electronic medical record software development combining its technological platform and deep domain-specific medical knowledge.
This segment is part 1 in a two-part series: Designing EMR Systems for Colleagues by Tim A. Sayed, MD, Medical Director of EMA Plastic Surgery and EMA Cosmetic.
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