Automated Patient Appointment Reminders

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TherapyNotes features integrated appointment reminders, allowing you to notify your client of their upcoming appointment via email, text message, or phone call. Reminding your clients in advance of their appointments helps to dramatically reduce your no-show rate and decrease related expenses.

During your 30-day free trial of TherapyNotes, all automated appointment reminders are completely free.

Role Required: Practice Administrator, Scheduler, or Clinician (for assigned patients)

To enable appointment reminders and configure default appointment reminder settings:

  • Click the User Icon > Settings > Patient Appointment Reminders
  • Select the Enable TherapyNotes Appointment Reminders checkbox. In the Default Patient Settings dropdown, choose the default method by which appointment reminders are sent:
    • No reminders unless enabled on individual patient's Patient Info tab
    • Email Only
    • Text (SMS) Only
    • Text (SMS) and Email
    • Text or Automated Call, and Email

If you decide to use email reminders, choose which email address should receive any replies to automated email appointment reminders from the dropdown in the section labeled Email Reminder Settings. In this section, you may also choose whether to address clients by their legal first name or their nickname as entered in the individual's chart.

If you decide to use automated phone call reminders, enter the phonetic spelling of your practice name in the Spoken Practice Name field in the section labeled Phone Reminder Settings. This is how your practice name will be read in phone call reminders.

Quick Tip: Use the buttons at the bottom of the page to send a test email, SMS, or phone reminder to see or hear an example of what your clients will receive.

Each client may receive appointment reminders according to their individual preferences. This may be helpful for clients who likely respond to text messages but rarely check their email.

To customize appointment reminders for individual clients:

  • Click Patients > Patient Name > Patient Info tab
  • Click anywhere on the Patient Information box to edit

practiceinfo.png

  • Verify that the client's contact information (Mobile PhoneHome PhoneWork PhoneOther Phone, and Email Address fields) is correct, and choose whether they have consented to have messages (either voice or text) sent to each of their phone numbers using the dropdown to the right of each field. Note: TherapyNotes will never send voice or text message appointment reminders to a client's Work Phone or Other Phone. These fields are for your reference
  • In the Preferred Phone dropdown, select which phone number should be called when automated phone call reminders are enabled
  • By default, the Appt Reminders dropdown is set to Use Practice Default Settings. Select a different option from this dropdown to override the practice default

Please note: If a client's Preferred Phone is Mobile and Text or Call, and Email is selected from the Appt Reminders dropdown (or Text or Automated Call, and Email is selected as the practice default), TherapyNotes will always attempt to send a text message first. If delivery of the text message fails, then an automated call is attempted. If a client's Preferred Phone is Home, TherapyNotes will send a reminder to the client via automated call and will not attempt to send a text message.

Quick Tip: When Text or Call, and Email is selected for a client, TherapyNotes always sends an email along with a text or voice message to the client. If you do not wish to send an email reminder to a client, select Text or Call, and Email from the Appt Reminders dropdown. Next to the client's phone number, select the type of messages you would like to send from the dropdown, and leave Email Address blank. Enter the email address in the Patient Comments box for reference.

Appointment reminders may be further customized for each one of your client's contacts. Sending appointment reminders to contacts can be valuable in many situations, from ensuring everyone in a family therapy session receives a reminder of an upcoming appointment to sending reminders to parents or guardians of a minor client.

To send appointment reminders to a client's contact:

  • Click Patients > Patient Name > Patient Info tab
  • Click anywhere on the Contacts box to edit
  • Select an option from the Appt Reminders dropdown. By default, this dropdown is set to No Reminders

About Email Reminders

Email reminders are sent approximately 48 hours in advance of the appointment and are completely free.

The automated system will stop sending email appointment reminders to clients whose email has bounced or who have opted out. To opt back in to email appointment reminders, ask the client to visit https://www.therapyportal.com/p/pliner/subscriptions/.

About Text Message (SMS) Reminders

Automated text (SMS) reminders are sent approximately 24 hours in advance of the appointment and cost $0.14 each.

Only mobile phones can receive text message reminders. Clients can opt out of text appointment reminders by replying "STOP" to the message. Clients can opt back in to text appointment reminders by texting "START" to (215) 543-7686.

About Phone Call Reminders

Automated phone call reminders are sent approximately 24 hours in advance of the appointment and cost $0.14 each.

Home and mobile phones can receive voice message reminders; the automated system never calls work phone numbers. If the client does not answer, the automated service leaves a voicemail and repeats the following message twice: "This call is to remind you about your appointment <day> at <time> with <Practice Name>. Please call our offices at <practice phone> if you have any questions or will not be able to attend. If you would like to disable appointment reminders by telephone, please talk to your clinician."

Have more questions? Submit a request

Comments

  • Avatar
    Bill Hesse

    How much does this cost?

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Bill,

    Email reminders are free and are sent 48 hours in advance of the date of service. Text/Phone reminders are $.14 each and are sent 24 hours in advance of the date of service. To set this up please go to your "Settings" within your TherapyNotes account and click on "patient appointment reminders" and check off "Enable TherapyNotes Appointment Reminders". Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Erin Byrnes

    Quick question - if you enter a client's appointment less than 48 hours before the appointment is to take place and you have email reminders enabled, will they still get an email reminder automatically? If so, when will that be sent? For example, I just entered a couple appointments for tomorrow. Will those clients still receive their email reminders and if not, is there a way for me to manually generate the reminders to be sent?

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Erin,

    I'm going to reach out to you regarding your question. Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Andi Hawkins

    is it possible to use a different address than what is listed in our practice information (we have a PO Box for business purposes but our physical address is obviously different). Thank you!

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Nancy,

    Please go to your "settings" in TherapyNotes and click on "practice billing" under "Alternate Billing Address" check off "Use an Alternate Billing Address" enter the information and click "save billing settings" at the bottom left in the green box. This will then appear on your bills, statements, and CMS forms (field 33). If you have any questions please let us know. We can be reached at "support@therapynotes.com" or via the phone at 215-658-4550. Thank you.

  • Avatar
    Andi Hawkins

    Fantastic, thank you!

  • Avatar
    Stacy Schaffer

    Hi there, I am just sampling out this system and had a question... In the part of schedule reminders where it says appointment alert with a big text box, do you need to put the text/email in that box for it to go through? Or is it enough to check the box in their individual file for the system to know what to do? Thanks so much!

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Stacy,

    The Appointment Alert is a reminder for you for that particular date of service. For example, if you needed to get the client insurance ID card, this would be a good place for that. To set up patient appointment reminders please go to "settings" then under the scheduling header, click "patient appointment reminders", check off "Enable TherapyNotes Appointment Reminders". Email reminders are free and are sent 48 hours in advance of the date of service, but if you would like phone or text reminders those are 14 cents each and are sent 24 hours in advance of the date of service. You can set what types of reminders the patient receives in their patient information tab within their chart under "Appt Reminders". Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you.

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Stacy,

    You also have the option to add a reminder within the patients chart that will appear on all of their appointments. If you go into their chart and click on "To do and schedule" on the top far right side click on "+Add Reminder" and once you enter this it will appear on that particular patients appointments. On the schedule next to their dates of service you will see a yellow bell that will have the reminder. Thank you.

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Stacy,

    You also have the option to add a reminder within the patients chart that will appear on all of their appointments. If you go into their chart and click on "To do and schedule" on the top far right side click on "+Add Reminder" and once you enter this it will appear on that particular patients appointments. On the schedule next to their dates of service you will see a yellow bell that will have the reminder. Thank you.

  • Avatar
    Edna Brinkley

    I also have the same question as Erin Byrnes above, but I don't see an answer here. Could you please answer the same question for me: if you enter a client's appointment less than 48 hours before the appointment is to take place and you have email reminders enabled, will they still get an email reminder automatically? If so, when will that be sent? Thank you

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    The email reminder is set to go 2 days prior to the appointment. Email reminders can go out up to 24 hours before the appointment if it was made less than 2 days prior to the appointment.

  • Avatar
    Luke Einerson

    I noticed the phone number that will be placing the calls and txt reminders has a different area code than where we live. Is there anyway to have this reflect a local area code, or is there anyway to have this phone number be the same as the office phone number? Also, if clients try to call the phone number back that appears in their caller id, will they be able to connect to the office?

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    I apologize as there is not a way to select a specific phone number. In the future we may support custom numbers per practice at which point you would be able to select a local number. Though that would not be call back enabled. Please let me know if you have any questions. Thank you.

  • Avatar
    Michelle Moreno

    I was wondering if there was a setting to send a specific message to multiple patients, for example, that a clinician will be out of the office on a specific day and their regular appointments will resume the following week?

  • Avatar
    Laura

    Michelle,

    Unfortunately the patient appointment reminders are not customizable, and emails can't be sent directly from TherapyNotes. TherapyNotes does, however, make it easy to send an email to a patient. Click Patients at the top, click on a patient's name, then click the "Patient Info" tab. If an email address is saved in this tab, click the blue envelope icon to the right of the email address field. This brings up the email software set as your default in your computer and auto-populates the "To" field with the patient's email. Note that this only links to the email software stored as the default in your computer, meaning it may not be a HIPAA-compliant portal. Be sure to check your computer's default email settings before sending any HIPAA-protected information.

  • Avatar
    Ryan Scott, PhD

    Hi there,

    Any changes expected for the reminders aspect of TherapyNotes? We are having problems with clients cancelling, but we don't know when they cancelled and don't know if we can charge them a no show fee. There is no time stamp for cancellations in TherapyNotes.

    By comparison, check out Intake Q. They allow you to customize the information to clients, so we could restate the cancellation policy. Also, if a cancellation is less than 24 hours, they are automatically charged.

    http://support.intakeq.com/appointment-reminders/

    http://support.intakeq.com/custom-cancellation-policy-online-booking/

    As it stands now, TherapyNotes reminders system is too basic, and may be actually costing us money by making it so easy to cancel with no consequences or ability to track.

  • Avatar
    Laura

    Ryan,

    Thanks for the feedback! When patients reply to email appointment reminders, they go to the email that has been selected in User Icon > Settings > Patient Appointment Reminders > Email Reminder Settings.

    When patients respond to text message reminders, you can read their response in TherapyNotes. To do so, go to the calendar, click on the appointment. Click the link that says "SMS Sent". Here you will see the time, date, and message that they sent.

  • Avatar
    Nicola Barnes

    We have multiple locations where we see client's. Is there a way to have the email reminder state the clients specific location and not the practices general address?

  • Avatar
    Laura

    Nicola,

    First, make sure multiple practice locations are added in your account: User Icon > Settings > "Multiple Practice Locations".

    Next, make sure to select the location when scheduling the appointment.

    Once the above steps are completed, the other office location will be relayed in the patient appointment reminder.

  • Avatar
    Amy Pascarella

    Is there a way to have multiple email addresses for the same client / appointment reminder. For instance, a high school student would like to receive the reminder, but so would their parent who drives them to the appointments. Can they both get the email reminders?

  • Avatar
    Laura

    Amy,

    To send appointment reminders to your patient's parent, add them as a contact under the "Patient Info" tab. In the contact information is an "Appt Reminders" dropdown. Select the type of reminder for them to receive, then save changes.

  • Avatar
    Lily Alatorre

    Hello,

    If a patient's reminder setting is at "Use Practice Default Settings" no reminders are sent...correct? If that is the case, but for one of their contacts, reminders ARE chosen, will the reminders be sent, or does the patient's individual reminder setting trump any other of their contacts' reminder settings?

    Thank you

  • Avatar
    Laura

    Lily,

    If the patient's reminder setting is "Use Practice Default Settings" the patient will get the type of notification set under User Icon > Settings > "Patient Appointment Reminders" > "Types of Reminders to Send". The patient's contact will receive the type of notification designated by the "Appt Reminders" dropdown in the contact's information.

  • Avatar
    Sarah Haskell

    Hello,
    If you enter a client's appointment less than 48 hours before the appointment is to take place and you have email reminders enabled, will they still get an email reminder automatically? If so, when will that be sent?
    Thanks!

  • Avatar
    Laura

    Sarah,

    Yes, the client will still receive the appointment reminder even if it is added less than 48 hours in advance.

  • Avatar
    Mary Ann Navarre

    Good morning, is there a way to find out what email reminders were sent out for a particular day? An appt was accidentally deleted but I'm not sure which client it was and that person was coming in early so I wanted to see who it was via email reminders

  • Avatar
    Jordan

    Mary Ann,

    Please go to settings in TherapyNotes and click on "Activity Log". From the Action Type menu choose "Appointment Reminder sent" and enter a date range. Once you click on search you will be able to see when the reminders were sent. If you require further assistance please contact support at 215-658-4550. Thank you.

  • Avatar
    Robyn Codrington

    Can the appointment reminders sent and client responses, etc. be listed/integrated within the list of notes as Contact Notes? All interaction with clients are part of their file. This also helps the provider document when dealing with 3rd party payers.