Appointment reminders and messages

Dr Ben Brown
Dr Ben Brown
  • Updated

Patchs appointment reminders can be used to remind patients when they have an upcoming appointment at your practice. The appointment reminders work for all appointments in your clinical system, not just those booked via Patchs.

Patients will receive a reminder 24 hours before their appointment, using their contact information on the Personal Demographics Service (PDS).

For appointment reminders, Patchs users can now use a button to update clinic & slot types, management of cancelled appointments and reminder delivery method. 

Post appointment messages can be used to automatically send patients the Friends and Family Test after appointments. To use this feature you will need to enable appointment reminders.

Enabling appointment reminders and messages for SystmOne Practices

You can enable appointment reminders from your feature settings page by ticking the Appointment Reminders box, which will create the Appointment reminders and messages tab.

 

Enabling appointment reminders for EMIS Practices

As an EMIS practice who want to use Patchs to send Appointment Reminders you will need to let us know first. Navigate to your Feature Settings page and click on the bottom button to make the request:

(If you cannot see the 'Request to enable appointment reminders' button, please contact the Advanced Team on: 0330 303 1274 or submit a request to the Advanced Customer Support Portal )

After you have made the request you will see this message explaining the status of your request:

Before appointment reminders can be enabled for your practice, EMIS will contact you and ask you to activate an Appointment Reminder Data Extraction Agreement.

Once you have done this and your appointment reminder data is available to Patchs you can enable Appointment Reminders from the feature settings page:

  • First choose your EMIS Practice Name.
  • Then tick the Appointment reminders box will to create the Appointment reminders and messages  tab where you can configure your Appointment Reminder settings

Add a new appointment reminder and/or post-appointment message

From the Appointment reminders and messages tab, select  Update Clinic and Slots to show the most up-to-date clinics and slots at your practice. 

And then select Add new reminder and/or message.

And then complete the following sections as appropriate.

Choose the clinic and/or slot you want to set reminders or post appointment messages for

Send reminders

You can edit the appointment reminder message text but should not delete [date], [time], [cancel link] and [unsubscribe link].
You can include [patient name] to automatically fill the patient name.

Send post appointment message

You can then chose to send the reminders and/or message via email, SMS or both:

Once you have set your appointment reminder and/or message, click Save to confirm.

Enabling appointment reminders

When appointment reminders are enabled for a particular clinic type patients will be sent a reminder 24 hours before their appointment using their contact information on the Personal Demographics Service (PDS).

When post-appointment reminders are enabled for a particular clinic type patients will be sent a  message two hours after their appointment using their contact information on the Personal Demographics Service (PDS) .

Patients may not have consented to receiving appointment reminders or post-appointment messages, though they can unsubscribe.
Patients will not receive reminders or post-appointment messages if there are no valid contact details on the PDS or they have unsubscribed from reminders.

  •  
  • Email Enabled
    • When email is enabled patients will receive their appointment reminder by email
  • SMS enabled (visible at practices with Patchs SMS)
    • When SMS is enabled patients will receive their appointment reminder by SMS

Edit appointment reminder settings

To change the appointment reminder and/or messaging settings for a particular clinic type, you should click on Edit the link at the bottom of the panel. 

You can edit:

  • Whether or not the reminders are enabled
  • The reminder message text

  • Whether or not the post-appointment messages are enabled
  • The post-appointment message text

  • Whether the reminder and/or post-appointment message should be sent via email and/or SMS

To change the clinic or slot type please add a new reminder.

What patients see

Appointment reminders

Patients receive an SMS and/or email reminder (dependent on how you configure the reminders) about their appointment 24 hours beforehand. This includes a link to cancel the appointment and an option to opt out of future reminders  and messages.

 

             

 

Post-appointment FFT message

Patients receive an SMS and/or email message (dependent on how you configure the messages) asking for their feedback, 2 hours after their appointment. This includes a link to the friends and family test and an option to opt out of future reminders and messages.

EMIS troubleshooting

If you are experiencing issues with EMIS appointment reminders, please try the following:

Deactivate and reactivate Patchs from the partner API list

  • Go to EMIS Ball > System Tools > EMAS Manager > Partner API tab (bottom left of screen)
  • Select Patchs from the partner API list on the left-hand side (it should have a green tick next to it)
  • Select "Deactivate Application" at the top left
  • Then select "Activate Application" at the top left again

This will reset Patchs and re-activate the API calls as some had become deactivated.

Ensure all users are correctly enabled

  • Go to EMIS Ball > System Tools > EMAS Manager > Partner API tab (bottom left of screen)
  • Select Patchs from the partner API list down the left-hand side (it should have a green tick next to it)
  • Select "Login Access" along the top
  • Select the user(s) you want to give access to and tick the boxes "Allow Login" and "Auto Login"
  • Select OK
  • The user should log out of EMIS and log back in for these changes to take effect

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