Needed: Great Billing Software For Solo Practioners

Jan
28
2010

A reader,  Kristene Elmore, in Brighton, Colorado wrote in asking,

Can anyone suggest a great billing software to manage a solo private practice?

. . . Does anyone use TheraQuick?

. . . Has anyone customized a general billing software like QuickBooks?”

[Update 01-28-09]    Another reader, Sandy Jardine, in Phoenix, Arizona also wrote in asking for help.

I am a long-time user of Therapist Helper software.  I have just been informed that when I switch to Windows 7 my ancient version of Therapy Helper will be useless.  I need to get new software. I am looking for something SIMPLE.  I have a completely self  pay practice, do no direct billing to insurance, submit no electronic claims and need no scheduler. I provide my clients statements they can submit directly to their insurance for reimbursement.  I also use it for keeping track of my income receivables, client lists, etc.

Can you please recommend what you have found helpful, affordable, simple and windows 7 compatible.”

If you have experience and opinions about billing software, please introduce yourself, tell us what you’ve used (and for how long) and let us benefit from what you know!

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Comments

  1. I use an online billing service which is http://www.officeally.com. It is free, easy and quick.

    To present paper statements to my clients to keep up on co-pays and receipts, I use a very old and updated Therapist Helper, which I do not use for any other reason now that I do the e-billing.

    • Hi, Karen! It’s good to here from you! I just checked out your website and have subscribed to your blogs in my RSS reader. Looking forward to seeing what you have planned at Lake House Center for this spring.

      Thanks for the billing service suggestion! Were you also pleased with Therapist Helper when you were using it?

  2. I continie to learn more and more about private practice for my future. Thanks to all.

  3. I liked Therapist Helper, yes. But I never used all the features to begin with. It was easier to write a quick handwritten note rather than fire up the computer and easier to keep a paper calendar handy as appointments were scheduled and rescheduled. Now that we have iPhones, etc., I may eventually change.

  4. Victoria Johnson says:

    I have used Therapist Helper for years dating back to 1995 and have loved it. It do not use the internet piece because I do not use insurance. Great for billing and fantastic for historical reports. Problem now is I switched to apple and it is not compatible with out downloading windows but that has posed some problems. Any one have mac software for solo practitioner.

    Tamara, found you and your web site last night and can’t wait to meet you, wonderful, Victoria

    • Hi, Victoria! Thanks for the feedback and welcome to our virtual neighborhood! I hope you will introduce yourself and tell us all about your practice!

  5. Greetings!
    In the process of building a private practice and need feedback re user friendly billing and patient record software. Any suggestions?
    PS Still use my AT A GLANCE date book -never leave home without it.
    Marie

    • Hi, Marie! Welcome to our community here at Private Practice from the Inside Out! As we continue to grow, I’m sure others will drop in to offer their opinions on billing and patient record software. Like you, I’m still loving my At a Glance date book!

  6. Hi PPIO group:
    I am a psychotherapist in Campbell, CA. I have an apple laptop with parallels software so that I can run pc software, ie. Therapist Helper, on it.

    Therapist Helper has been a great product for me.

    However…
    I also just bought an I phone. I would like to move to all Apple products for billing and cc billing software. I found that Apple has a Payware program that lets you swipe credit cards in the office from a hand held cradle that fits into the palm of your hand. YOu drop your iphone into it.
    So, that’s cool.

    I called US Data Capture, the cc billing 3rd party used by Therapist Helper. They will look into seeing if they can support this.

    I also called Leonore at TH to see if there’s anyway to use Apple products with Therapist Helper.

    I will also look into Quik Books as we use Quicken & Mint for personal $ software and budget software.

    I will post what I find out. If anyone has anything to chime in, let me know…please. I am looking for Apple billing software that syncs with Google or Apple calendars, bill and logs cc billing in the $ software automatically, and sends bills. I do not need insurance billing or e claims as I am a pay at the time of session therapist at this time.

    Many thanks! Mary

    • Hi, Mary! Thanks so much for sharing your experiences and your ideas. I’m looking forward to hearing what you learn, what works, and what doesn’t!

      And, feel free to introduce yourself and tell us about your practice!

  7. I am curious what you decided to go with. I was told that clinical notes 444 was a great buy. My concern with them that they are not compatible with windows 7. Thanks Brenda

    • Hi, Brenda. Thanks for dropping in! You’ll probably laugh when I tell you that I prefer the flexibility of pen and paper. Yes, I do hate keeping up with all those old files but for actual content, the old fashioned way works best for me.

      The majority vote here so far is for Therapist Helper. I think it has probably been around the longest. I’m not familiar with Clinical Notes 444 but here is the website for it

    • http://jeannegoodma.mysite4now.com/purchase1.asp
    • . If you’ve used it, can you tell us what you think about it?

  • I use Notes444 and find it very helpful for my solo practice. It’s easy to use and while it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles of TherapistHelper, it’s streamlined and you only have to pay a fee upfront for it (not monthly fees), which I appreciate. I didn’t like the idea that once all my data & old files were somewhere that I might feel stuck with that program. There’s a billing add-on that you can opt to pay for, as well. I’m one of those “prefer pen and paper” people, too, but I dislike all of the storage associated with that method so Notes444 has been great for me.

    • Thanks, Elizabeth! Now you’ve done it – I’m definitely going to throw up a post about electronic health records in the next few weeks to gather even more input! Thank you for the nudge!

  • Just a quick couple of suggestions based on your previous postings. Notes 444 is compatible with Windows 7. I have done it and love the program. I have been extremely happy with Delphi PBS (Practice Billing Software) and have used it for years. It does what it promises, is user-friendly, and the support is excellent. I will soon be posting a free paper on selecting psychotherapy billing software.

    Excellent site by the way. It’s a lot of work but I can see that your are helping a lot of our peers. Thank you.

    • Hi, Bruce! Welcome to Private Practice from the Inside Out! Are you affiliated with Notes 444 or Delphi Practice Billing Software? I hope you’ll drop back in to let us know when your free paper on billing software is posted. Would love to help others find it!

      I hope you’ll drop back in here often and join the conversation!

    • I was just researching Delphi Practice Billing Software and it looks excellent. However, it sure is expensive for one person! Any opinions on how it compares to Therapist Helper. I bill insurance and LOVE the idea of being able to track all business expenses, profit and loss, etc…

  • Hello all,

    I have finished the paper on Finding the Best Psychotherapy Billing Software for Your Practice. It is free to all and includes steps for evaluating software products. If you find it helpful please let me know.

    • Thanks, Bruce, for letting us know! I so appreciated receiving a draft of your white paper and encourage others to contact Dr. Bruce Wilson directly to obtain a copy for you own review!

    • Patrice Evans says:

      I’m interested in the paper by Dr. Bruce Wilson, Finding the Best Psychotherapy Billing Software for your practice. I’m also interested in any further feedback about DELPHI 32. I’m trying to sort out requirements for HIPAA HITECH compliance.
      Thank you!

      • Hi, Patricia! It’s good to have your voice here. If you click on Dr. Bruce Wilson’s name (at the beginning of his comment), the link should take you directly to his website. I believe he has that white paper there along with a billing program that he developed and sells.

    • Paul Schulze says:

      Hi Bruce, I would be interested in reading your paper. My little practice is currently looking into options for billing software.

  • Bruce,
    If you are still viewing this thread I have two follow-up questions. How do you think Notes444 compares with Quicdoc? I like that they are both customizable, and downloadable rather than internet-based. I also like that both have only a one-time fee.

    Quicdoc seems much more modern and updated, but is quite detailed. I like the simplicity of Notes444, as it seems much quicker to complete, while effective.

    Secondly, how did you rate the billing portion of Notes444?

    Much thanks for your input.

  • Consider taking a look at http://www.TherapyNotes.com. A powerful practice management system that is web-based so it works on Macs and Windows. You can view your calendar on your smart phone. The heart of the system is the notes system, which makes it really fast to do your notes, and makes sure you don’t leave out anything required by insurance companies.

    • Hi, Brad! Thanks for sharing your product with me. You’re right, I’m still using old fashioned paper and pen for my charting. $60 / month for record keeping seems a bit pricey to me. And, since I’m not unhappy with my current system, I think I’ll have to pass. If you get any great sales, though, you are welcome to drop back in and let us know!

  • I have been using the free online OfficeAlly.com for almost 3 years and recommend it to all of my colleagues. I found it fairly easy to get set up, the Tech Support personnel walked me through a 20 minute phone orientation initially, and I have had no problems. Typically from the time I input a session (takes less than a minute once the client has been entered the first time) to the time I receive insurance reimbursement is about 2 weeks.

    • Hi, Dawn! Welcome to Private Practice from the Inside Out! And, thanks for taking time to offer your experience up and your recommendation, too!

      I hope you’ll drop back in to introduce yourself to our online community here and that we’ll hear your voice in the midst of the dialogue!

  • I have been in private practice for 8 years and periodically look for good software to help manage my practice. Like several here,I find paper and pencil has worked best for me. I was told early in my practice to use Therapist Helper,but the cost was more than I could handle. I was not familiar with several of the web pages listed and plan to look into them. On a side note,my accountant recommends I keep doing what I am for as long as I can due to confidentiality and she feels it is working. Thanks for all the good information.

    • Hi, Donna! Thanks for dropping in here to chat!

      I have to say that I’ve supervised new therapists for licensing and have consistlently found that those who start out with a software program for documenting their work are much more dependent on that framework than those who start out the old fashioned way with pen and paper. My belief is that new professionals need to spend several years honing their critical thinking and conceptualization skills before settling into such “shortcuts.”

      Having said that, we’re still interested in hearing from the rest of you guys concerning practice management tools – pros and cons.

  • Hi there!
    I am new to private practice and wonder about QuickBooks. Is it necessary?
    I have an private practice in Raleigh, NC and am completely out of pocket payment.
    I do not have use for printing checks and some of the other features listed on the software. Any thoughts? I plan to utilize an accountant–but I want to be as organized as possible for him!
    Thank you!! I love what WE do for a living!

    • Hi, Liz, and welcome! I’m glad you stopped in . . . . No QuickBooks is not a requirement. Like you, I am also a fee for service practice. However, I use QuickBooks simply to keep myself organized (and because that is what my accountant has requested). Your accountant may prefer that you track your income and expenses in a different way. I’m old enough to remember when it was just a pen and paper accounting system:)!

      In any case, thanks for dropping in! I hope you’ll be back often to comment and share your challenges and success as you build your private practice!

  • I am rubbish when it comes to billing and recording my spending for the taxman. I use a simple app on my iPhone for my diary which I link to Google calender. I have tried a form on my website that clients can book in with but most of them did not want to use it.

    • Hi, Ian! Welcome to Private Practice from the Inside Out! – At least I think you are new here . . . . You have me chuckling because those are not the strengths for a lot of us therapists!

      Where are you located and what is it you do?

  • Lynette says:

    I use an online system to enter progress notes and also file insurance claims. It is called http://www.carepaths.com. I’ve been using it for nearly a year now and have been pleased. It costs about $30/mo and it well worth it because it takes merely minutes to enter insurance claims each week.

    I curious to hear how more people do their book keeping though. I find it so tedious and time consuming to track when insurance payments come through and then log that into Quickbooks.

    I am an art therapist in private practice outside of Boston.

    • Hi, Lynette! Welcome to Private Practice from the Inside Out! Thank you so much for sharing your software with us! I think the reason so few have responded to this old post is because so few therapists are yet comfortable with the electronic records. (I’m still using pen and paper for my own notes!) However, I know this is a question that gets asked fairly often. Since it has been quite a while since this was posted, let me take this to a blog post and see if I can get more of a response. I know others will appreciate the info, too!

    • Hey, Lynette – just noticed that you haven’t got a gravatar – a little image of you that shows up when you comment here and elsewhere. Here’s how to set one up.

  • Therapyappointment.com is far better than helper and much cheaper! I have 16 therapists and it works well. Support is great. All in one package.

    • Hi, Paul! Welcome to Private Practice from the Inside Out and thank you for sharing your experience with us. Are you affiliated with Therapyappointment.com in any way? Make any money off of it?

      I’m happy to share the info and add this to the list I am working on for the post on electronic health records. Just wanting to make sure that I / folks know if the opinion is biased in any way:)

    • Paul, here’s a link to tell you how to set up your own gravatar (It’s the little picture of you that shows up beside your comments on this blog and others.) It will help us get to know you more quickly. And, the good news is it’s easy and it’s free.

  • This is a very helpful discussion, and I love the blog overall, Tamara. I just opened my practice in March and need to get some software. I am leaning towards QuickBooks, but worry it may be not user friendly enough for me. I appreciate some of the automated services I have seen online programs, but clearly there are confidentiality concerns if my bank passes client names to my bookkeeping software. (Also, my bank is so small that they were not listed with anyone for direct flow of information.) I would also like something that sees my company credit card an automatically categorizes and records these expenses. Any thoughts?

    • hi, Amy! Welcome to Private Practice from the Inside Out and thank you for saying you love my blog. It’s an amazingly supportive and resourceful community here so I hope you will just dive right in to help yourself grow your practice. I can’t provide you with much in the way of useful info on practice management software but I’m sure there are others here who have opinions. I’m putting together a rather extensive list of software options but have no first hand knowledge of them. I should get that posted within the next few weeks.

      • I am looking into practice management tools as well and look forward to the post. I am hoping to find something web based, with electronic billing, account posting and good note taking options, preferably with e signature option for notes.

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