Best set up for Non-Profit/Non-Billing use?

I do sport medicine for a very successful semi-pro team in my state. For the first few years, it was pure sports medicine which is already covered under applicable state laws.

However the last year I have branched out with some players to include injections with consent and documentation (at no cost to players, it is all on my husband and I for cost), but enough players have become interested and are using additional services not covered under sports medicine related statutes that I need a more organized way of keep track of records, meds, allergies, injuries, consent forms, and the like. I also have some uninsured and under-insured players who have begun using me for minor primary care type services.

What is the best way to go about setting up an EMR to keep track of everything and keep me in compliance even though I do not ever charge anything to players or request insurance info, much less bill any insurance?


-Amanda Dorough, DO


Hi Dr Dorough
OpenEMR was originally built to manage a small primary care medical practice and its default features are still optimized for that. Any of the functions available in the EMR are strictly speaking, optional: it does not compel you to perform any operations or use any features you do not want.

Recording fees for services is completely optional, as is billing the patient or taking in- person payments. Just an idea here, it might be useful to enter the costs of services just for tracking your practice’s expenses, but it is optional. And again, the EMR does not compel you to invoice patients or take payments at all.

All the other clinical factors you mention are included in the standard Community Edition of OpenEMR which comes pre-supplied with several clinical forms and reports. They serve various purposes and can be customized to suit your precise needs. Customization would require computer skills ranging from a nerdy front desk staff to a php developer, but many MD practice owners do create their own forms.

The best way to set up OpenEMR to work with your specialized practice is not so much a setup/ configuration issue, but to define what you want to accomplish with a workflow then locate the EMR tools that do that. So, the first step would be to get to know what OpenEMR can do. Just in case you are not familiar with the application here are some links you may find helpful, from the OpenEMR documentation wiki.

Top level of the OpenEMR documentation wiki. Docs for versions 5 and up are generally applicable to the current v7:

Tour of OpenEMR’s features though not much is said about how to use them:

A generic encounter (appointment) workflow. As mentioned you only need to do the steps you want to do:

If you find that you need professional help in constructing your workflows or customizing forms, the OpenEMR community is made up of a large number of developers and vendors who can be hired to help. The company I work for is one of them, but this page has a listing of the other vendors (found above our listing shown in the link) who have been certified by the OpenEMR Org as support vendors for the EMR:

But remember you can always come with your questions to this Forum for no-cost answers from the Community who all love to help.
Best- Harley