The Best 7 Free and Open Source Mental Health Software
The difference between traditional health environments and the present ones is that today patients want to participate in their healthcare journey. When it comes to mental healthcare, there is a huge unmet need due to its complexities. Enabling both superior mental healthcare delivery and ensuring patient engagement is a challenging task for mental health practitioners with limited resources. It is difficult for them to include patient engagement tools in their daily workflows.
Another area of complication is treatment. Mental disorders and ailments require a comprehensive study of the patient's history and previous medication to diagnose the cause of his/her present mental condition. Behavioral therapists have to maintain a massive database of patient's records, which is not feasible if maintained manually. Moreover, insurance demands, billings, scheduling, and other administrative works add more to their already existing workload.
This is where high-functioning, seamless medical technology can improve healthcare encounters for both the medical practitioners and the patients. Connected health technology such as mental health software can simplify workflows for practitioners, ensure stress-free visits (both in-person and virtual), optimize therapy processes, and enhance patient's experience.
What is Mental Health Software?
Mental health Software is a set of application tools that assist mental health practitioners and behavioral therapists in managing, optimizing, and streamlining their workflows. It is mainly of two types:
Mental Health Practice Management Software
The mental health practice management systems optimize the workflows, operations, and administrative tasks such as scheduling appointments, billing, communication, treatment plans, and insurance claims processing.
Mental Health EMR Software
Mental Health Electronic Medical Records (EMR) software solutions automate tasks related to creating, storing, retrieving, and updating patient records related to medications, demographics, histories, lab data, pharmacies, and more.
What are the challenges faced by Mental Health Providers?
- Handling excessive paperwork
- Cutting treatment and operating costs
- Managing workflows amidst excessive workloads
- Decreasing medication errors
- Storing patient data and medical records safely
- Maintaining productivity in the work
- Decreasing appointment cancellations and last minute no shows
- Managing administrative and financial tasks
- Ensuring compliance for insurance reimbursements and audits
- Ensuring patient satisfaction and engagement
What are the benefits of Mental Health Software?
Minimizes Appointment Cancellations:
Mental health Software with Telehealth capabilities minimizes appointment cancellations and no-shows by offering teletherapy options and schedule reminders. When patients are unable to get to the clinics, mental health software with features such as HIPAA-compliant video conferencing, whiteboard, High-quality video and audio, in-session documentation, annotation tools, two-way screen sharing, etc. allows mental health practitioners to offer therapeutic sessions online. It also reduces cancellations and no-shows with automated appointment reminders.
Fosters closer patient-provider relationships
By providing time-saving and stress-free scheduling of visits, appointment reminders, and virtual sessions, mental healthcare software increases patient engagement and satisfaction.
Decrease redundancy in processes:
Mental health tools simplify workflows, increase productivity, and reduce workload by automating repeated tasks and eliminating redundant processes.
Meet patient demand and expectations
With the patient portal and the facility to fill the self-reported information, mental health software expedites the patient's visit by eliminating waiting time
Reduce menial tasks
By automating most financial, administrative, and clinical processes, it reduces menial work and helps practitioners in focusing on quality patient care.
Establishes unhampered and secured communication between patients and providers throughout the healthcare journey via HIPAA compliant communication tools.
Streamlined processes bring down the cost of overall healthcare administration. It reduces errors in billing and expedites insurance settlement claims.
With pre-built templates, treatment plans, and specialty-specific mental health software, clinicians can improve their documentation and patient records.
More informed decision making
With complete information of the patient’s mental history, current status, prescribed medicines, demographics, etc. mental health specialists are better positioned to make informed clinical decisions.
As mental health care software solutions are HIPAA compliant, they provide high-end encryption and secure platforms for patient-provider communication, billing, and document storage.
Usage of Mental Health Software:
The usage of mental health software is forecasted to increase at a CAGR of 13.7% till 2024.
Mental health software usage is increasing due to multiple factors:
- Increased awareness about drug and substance abuse
- Rising adoption of technological solutions and software applications in healthcare
- Pandemic led depression and anxiety have increased the number of patients seeking mental health assistance.
- Expanding reimbursements and medical insurance coverages
- Acceptance and increased use of Telehealth services
- Favorable behavioral health reforms around the world
- The growing popularity of the subscription model in mental healthcare software as it requires minimal investment
- The health financing transition, according to WHO, has led to an increase in per capita spending on healthcare.
- Both doctors and individuals with mental health conditions prefer to have coaching and guidance - a self-help session, therapeutic support sessions on the go.
The data generated by mental health EHRs along with predictive algorithms, can successfully detect and flag patients with suicide risks. Mental health software assists mental health providers in efficiently treating various mental ailments with its functionalities.
What are the Features of Mental health software?
With scheduling features, mental health software offers a flexible scheduling system for one-time or recurring appointments. With availability slots visible to both the patients and the doctors, the mental health system is a user-friendly application for hassle-free appointment bookings.
Billing and invoicing tools with bank-grade security and encryption offer a faster check out and a hassle-free payment process for patients. Users can view all financial transactions and billing info on one platform. It also easily creates invoices and reports in one click for e-claim submissions and auditing purposes.
Behavioral health software is designed to take care of the insurance-related documentation for faster settlements of insurance claims. It creates a claim report, submits automated claim forms to insurance companies, and tracks claims status in real-time. It has a feature that validates claims before submission to correct incorrect, invalid, or incomplete claims before final submission.
The patient portal allows patients to schedule appointments, sign consent forms, view invoices, charged bills, therapy resources, and progress charts.
Secure Messaging and videoconferencing
Encrypted and HIPAA-compliant messaging allows therapists and patients to communicate securely. Most mental health software uses the AES-256 bit encryption algorithm, application firewall, and data key protected server drives for secure communication. Its telehealth feature allows safe videoconferencing for patients who are unable to come for physical visits.
Therapists can use whiteboard functionality for explaining various concepts, brainstorming, problem-solving, and activities. Annotative tools facilitate better collaboration.
Mental health practitioners can upload and organize their session resources such as therapy notes, handouts and worksheets, patient reports, discharge notes, lab reports, patient assessment sheets, treatment plans, online resources, billing documents, previous medical documents of the patients, etc.
The mental health software applications address user questions and attend to queries via community support, email support, calling support, live chat, messaging, etc.
Mental healthcare software allows users to enter prescription information directly into the software, and it is aligned with the pharmacy. The prescription information directly reaches the pharmacy that can keep the medicines ready for pick up.
This feature allows users to customize the user settings, assign roles, define access controls and permissions.
Mental health software comes with HIPAA compliant architecture. It also provides high-end encryption and firewall security for maintaining medical standards.
Reporting and Analytics
Users can download various types of reports related to billing, patient's progress, treatment, insurance, revenue, appointment data, no shows, etc.
This mental health software feature improves care efforts by sending alerts to doctors and staff of the upcoming tasks related to patients.
- Easy patient registration
- Automated eligibility verification for insurance claims
- Automated medical alerts
- Inventory management
Why choose a free and open source of mental health software?
The benefit of an open source of mental health software is:
An open source mental health software will free your mental health clinic from future vendor dependence. Once you have installed the software, you can make essential changes in settings and customize the overall version to suit your specific needs.
You don't have to pay any monthly subscription fee or annual charges.
In case of any technical issue, you are not dependent on the vendor to come and fix it. Your own IT department can take care of the glitches.
If you are using a free and open source mental health software, you can save a lot of money.
Apart from the free and open source mental health software, mental health establishments with huge resources can go for cloud-based mental health software.
The list of 7 best Free and Open Source Mental Health Software
Comparison of 7 best free and open source Mental Health software:
HospitalRun is a free and open source mental health software that is designed to provide hospital management services for even the least resourced clinical environments. It is an offline enabled hospital information system that lets users enter records even when there is no internet facility. It automatically synchronizes when the internet is connected. Owing to its versatile functionalities, it can be deployed in a variety of medical environments. The latest version is 2.0.
- Unlimited patient records with columns to add complete personal details of the patient along with the patient status and other details such as referred by, blood group, etc.
- Medical inventory management module
- Records patient’s visits and procedures
- The appointment management system has options to add appointments, search appointments, schedule theatre appointments, surgery dates, etc.
- The medication record management module allows users to add medication dates, prescription given, quantity requested, and refills.
- User administration to add users and customize settings
- The billing section provides complete billing details and invoices.
- Intuitive and Easy to use
- Can be downloaded on PC, Mac, and Linux environments
- Support through community
OpenEMR is a free and open source mental health software and medical practice management solution that provides a feature-rich environment for health practitioners. It provides free community-led support for its users. It can be downloaded for Windows, Linux, and Mac environments. It also provides a complete demo of its services to help users in installing and using the software.
- Patient Demographics: Enter name, date of birth, marital status, contact information, HIPAA compliance, insurance coverage, and other details of the patient.
- Scheduling: Advanced patient scheduling allows clinics to create automated-workflows triggered by patient check-in, repeating events, and reminders. Its calendar features can find open appointment slots and mention the categories of appointment.
- E-Prescribing: Allows to enter a prescription and have it automatically sent to the patient's alloted pharmacy.
- Medical Billing: Integrated billing that supports institutional billing standards
- Reporting: Generate reports for patient lists, appointments, referrals, and procedures
- Clinical Decision Rules: Set automated algorithms using the clinical decision rules engine
- Advanced Security: Encryption and HIPAA compliance
- Multilingual Support: OpenEMR is available in over 30 languages
- Patient Portal: Patients can register, seek appointments, make online payments, download related reports, etc.
nTreatment is a San Francisco based free mental health software for mental health practitioners. This integrated practice management solution for psychiatrists and therapists. It is free for upto 5 active patients a month, and thereafter it charges $ 0.50 per patient. It is a self-explanatory, intuitive, and responsive software that comes with a HIPAA compliant interface.
- Charting: Free forms and custom templates
- Billing: nTreatment provides a detailed summary of all transactions, statements, income
- Credit Card Payments: Patients can pay using a credit card, and it provides PCI compliant card storage and one-click charging.
- Electronic Insurance Billing: For insurance and mediclaim, it allows electronic claim submission
- Scheduling: Users can set single and recurring appointments, and send patients and doctors automated emails or text reminders for upcoming appointments
- Secure Patient Portal: Encrypted portal for secure communication and posting documents.
- Secure Messaging: Mobile compatible communication device for safe, legal, and auditable communication with the patients
- Secure Document Management: It has a document vault to store and manage documents in various formats, lab results, etc.
- E-Prescribing module for secure prescriptions
- Mobile App: nTreatment comes with an integrated mobile application
TheraNest is a leading mental health software provider that provides robust therapy note templates specially designed for mental health providers. It comes with features such as batch invoicing, electronic insurance claim submission, scheduling, session notes, and batch payments. It comes with a trial for 21 days. Theranest can be used by psychologists, counselors, and mental health professionals.
- Inbuilt templates for treatment plans and discharge, initial assessments, and progress notes
- Easy and comprehensive billing features
- Submit electronic med claims
- Multiple payment modes for faster payment collection
- Create invoices, bills, and receipts
- Send invoices to clients with a single click.
- Schedule recurring appointments
- Track attendance information for therapy sessions
- Send appointment reminders via text, email, or voice calls.
- Customer support team via phone, in-app message, and email
- Unlimited user accounts
- Secure, HIPAA compliant and Cloud-based environment
TherapyNotes is a mental health practice management, and the EMR solution has the tools that medical practitioners need to streamline their entire workflow. It takes care of all administrative tasks, and practitioners can focus more on providing care to their patients. It comes with a 30-days free trial.
- Scheduling and ToâDo List: Schedule appointments, manage tasks, integrate calendar, and connect ToâDo list to patient records.
- Electronic Records: Create detailed documentation with a variety of templates
- Keeps charts organized with HIPAA-compliant EMRs
- Electronic Billing: Manage client payments, bill insurance companies, and generate reports in just a few clicks.
- Card Processing: Secure credit, debit, and HSA cards processing for payments
- Custom Patient Portal: Allow patients to request appointments online
- Telehealth: Meet patients online with secure video sessions
- Security Features: Encrypted online access, disaster recovery, automatic backups, access controls, and more.
- Customer Support: Unlimited phone and email support
- Updates: Automatic software updates and 24/7 access to online resources.
TheraPlatform is a mental health software that supports both teletherapy and office visits. Its fully integrated services allow HIPAA compliant video conferencing, in-session document sharing, whiteboard, interactive apps, billing, scheduling, intake and consent forms, therapy notes, e-claim submission, client's portal, secure messaging, reports, and many more. It comes with a 30 days free trial.
- HIPAA compliant video conferencing and messaging
- Whiteboard, screen sharing, and annotation tools for telehealth
- Secure document vault for keeping reports, notes, and other documents
- Easy scheduling system for appointment management and reminders
- Integrated billing and invoicing.
- Client Portal for communication, scheduling, and self-service
- Customer support via email, live chat, and screen sharing.
- SSL-2048 bit encryption and database encryption
- Inbuilt insurance management and mediclaim settlement module
- Easy setup and free staff training
- Free note template library with a subscription
Kareo is a cloud-based, mobile-friendly mental health software. It helps mental health providers manage scheduling, registration, notes, bills, payments, compliance, and more with multiple inbuilt tools such as electronic health records, patient engagement, practice management, and billing applications. It has over 50 mental, behavioral, and psychiatry templates for direct use and also allows you to create customized ones. It also provides treatment plans and clinical notes designed specifically for mental health practitioners. This software comes with free training and assistance.
- Create and share schedules online and notify your team using text messages
- Easy health billing process
- Manage reauthorizations and insurance claims
- Secure messaging and compliance
- Billing analytics and reporting
- End-to-end claim tracking
- Kareo Engage is a marketing tool that helps practitioners in increasing their client base.
- Online scheduling, reminders, communications, and patient surveys to reduce no-shows
- Publish and manage mental health provider’s practice information across more than 70 online directories
- Free templates, treatment plans, and clinical notes
Any of the above top 7 free and open source mental health software can be used by mental health providers for streamlining their workflows and increasing patient engagement. If you need more comprehensive features, efficiency, and high-end functionalities, you can add AdvancedMD to your list. AdvancedMD is one of the most popular, industry-grade behavioral health software solutions available in the market. Let us see its features in detail:
AdvancedMD is a robust mental health software that provides advanced analytics, functions, and reporting tools for efficient mental health practice management. It has all clinical features for an automated practice, unified workflow, and patient engagement to ease the life of the mental health providers.
- Build ideal workflow from scratch
- 275+ configurable behavioral health EHR notes
- Mental health library to support clinicians assess, diagnose, and treat specific disorders
- Screen and develop treatment plans
- Auto-calculated diagnostics.
- Book a group appointment for a group session
- Prescribe electronically and access medical and prescription histories
- Inbuilt billing tools
- Highly flexible scheduling system
- Respond to requests, no-shows, and cancellations
- Automatically track, review, and submit claims.
- Easily capture and manage patient demographics
- More than 150 standard financial reports and nearly 500 custom reports
- Easily communicate to patients with the group and personalized messages
- Secure HIPAA-compliant video conferencing
- An intuitive online patient portal
To round it off, Businesses can choose from any of the mental health software discussed in this article. Apart from the discussed free mental health software, SimplePractice, CareLogic EHR, BestNotes, Delphi32, TherapyCharts, and NextStep, are some other mental health applications that you may choose for your medical practice. You can also check out our buyer's guide for mental health software for more details about the pricing, functions, and usage of the mental health software.
If you wish to analyze the features of any other free mental health software or software categories, then do visit GoodFirms' software directory page.
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