Manage Appointment Reminders
You can set up INSIGHT to send automated appointment reminders to patients. This is usually done as part of patient intake, when you collect patient contact information. Reminders can be sent as email messages to a valid email address or text messages to a mobile phone number.
Appointment reminder indicators
INSIGHT EMR marks appointments for which an automatic appointment reminder was sent by displaying an icon on the scheduled appointment.
indicates that the patient is set up for automatic appointment reminders.
indicates that INSIGHT EMR sent an appointment reminder message to the patient.
You can manually update appointments to indicate that the patient was called for an appointment reminder. Right-click on an appointment and then click Reminder Made.
indicates that the front desk manually called patient to remind him or her of the scheduled appointment. This allows you to track reminders for the patients who have not elected automatic email or text messages.
Patient consent for appointment reminders
Before setting up automatic appointment reminders for the patient, we recommend that you get written permission from the patient and explain that standard text messaging rates apply for the text.
You can use the Appointment Reminders letter template to document consent as follows:
Set up automated appointment reminders
- Open the Client Editor. Click on the toolbar, press F9, or on the Edit menu, click Clients.
- Open the patient record. See Open a Client Record for instructions.
- Click the Personal Information tab.
- Click a list option to set the patient's automatic appointment preference.
- None – INSIGHT does not send automatic reminders.
- Email – INSIGHT automatically sends appointment reminders to the patient's email. Requires a valid entry in the E-Mail field.
- Text Message (SMS) – INSIGHT automatically sends appointment reminders to the patient's cell phone number. Requires valid entries in the Cell field.
- Best practice is to test the patient's contact information before sending text or email reminders. Click Test to send a test message to the email or cell phone number.
Troubleshoot automated appointment reminders
INSIGHT does not directly send text messages. It sends an SMTP file to the cell phone provider, which then transmits the text message. Because of this, we recommend patients do not reply to automatic reminders. Instead, they should call the clinic over the phone if changes to their appointments are necessary.
This can make troubleshooting tricky, because once it is sent, INSIGHT does not get a response back that the message was received.
Variables that could cause text messages to fail include:
- The patient's carrier fails to send the text message.
- The patient changes cellular provider and does not inform the clinic.
- The patient is out of cell range.
- The patient's cell plan does not allow text messages, therefore it rejects the reminder message.
- The patient's number is included in any State or Federal "do not call" programs.
- The patient's junk or spam filter settings do not allow messages from firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If a patient has two appointments on the same day, at the same clinic location, a reminder will only be generated for the first appointment of the day.
- The Schedule tab in INSIGHT EMR was used to "drag and drop" a previously scheduled appointment to another day. Clinicient advises users to reschedule appointments by double-clicking on a patient's appointment and rescheduling through the "Add/Edit Appointments" window.