Client Appointment Reminders

Want to remind clients of their upcoming appointments? Want to ask clients to confirm they're coming to the appointment?

Ensure a higher client attendance rate by sending them a reminder a day or so before their appointment! Read on to find out how to set up reminders, and the various reminder types.

In this Article:


Configure Reminder Defaults

The default reminder amount of days (when creating a new client) is managed on a "per provider" basis.

This means providers can have different values, all determined here! (they can always be manually changed after creating a new client, discussed here: Manage or Edit Reminder Settings)

Depending on your roles, you can do this either way:


As a Provider:

  • My Profile (left menu)
  • Find the section titled Appointment Settings
  • Click the blue button (top right of the section):

  • Change the setting Reminder interval (days)
  • Click
  • Keep in mind that this will apply to reminder defaults for new clients created going forward
    • This will not impact existing clients

As an Owner or Manager:

  • Practice Settings (left menu)
  • Click Staff (top tab)
  • Click on the provider name you wish to edit
  • Find the section titled Appointment Settings
  • Click the blue button (top right of the section)
  • Change the setting Reminder interval (days)
  • Click
  • Keep in mind that this will apply to reminder defaults for new clients created going forward
    • This will not impact existing clients

When Creating a Client

When you or your staff are creating a new client in the system, when entering a phone number or email address we automatically check off the reminders option, but you are free to uncheck them after entry.

This uses the therapist's defaults set in the above section.

After clicking you'll be redirected to the profile.

If you wish to change the appointment reminder settings, like days, to something other than the default you can do so here and with the below steps picking up at the last bullet point (phone & email section):


Enable Client Appointment Reminders

To enable reminders that will be sent to an already established client, navigate to the client's profile:

  • Go to Clients (left menu)
  • Click their name which loads their profile
  • Find the section Phone & Email, just beneath the top demographics:

You should then see all the client's added phone numbers and email addresses aggregated all in one location here. The middle column shows the reminder status for that contact type.

⚠️ Note: Appointment Reminders are configured for the Practice Default Time Zone, and will display both the time zone and time to the client in the reminder.

Manage or Edit Reminder Settings

To manage or edit, click the far right square button with a pencil through it:

Seen below in red, click to adjust that contact or reminder type:

settings Phones & Email Options:

Far Left:


star Solid blue star marks the default
(if more than one of a contact type exists)
content_copy Copy the phone number or email

Far Right:


delete Delete the phone number or email
edit_square Edit the phone number or email


movie Video:

  • Edit an existing phone or email address reminder settings
  • Enable or disable reminders, confirmations, and number of days
To add a new phone or email, click (top right of section)

Reminder options:


mail Email

  • Number of days sent in advance: 1 - 5 days
  • Request confirmation: adds a button in the email to click & confirm

phone_iphone Phone

  • Reminder Types: Text or Phone call
  • Number of days sent in advance: 1 - 5 days
  • Request confirmation:
    • Text: adds "Please reply YES to confirm" to the end of the text reminder
    • Phone: press 1 to confirm for the phone call

Need to send reminders to someone other than the client?

If treating couples, families, or children/minors and you want appointment reminders to be sent to additional phone numbers or email addresses, simply add those phone and email addresses into the client's profile.

  • Go to the client's Phone & Email section
  • Click the button
  • Then configure it as you would for any client reminder:


Can I change or configure the reminder text or email?

We try to hold client privacy above all else at TherapyAppointment, and per our security and policy team's recommendations we have taken HIPAA's recommendations of reminder communications and have opted to include the minimal amount of information to convey the reminder message to the client, so customization beyond the basics (IE:  like reminder type, number of days advance, as well as confirmations) is not possible.

Customization with reminders such as custom text, or your group or business name or additional information is not supported currently.


Can a client reply to reminders?

We don't allow clients to reply to reminders, and don't log that information sent. Instead, we suggest your clients use our HIPAA compliant messaging instead.

If a client replies in any other way to the reminder text, we send them back the following non-configurable auto-reply: We don't understand. Reply "Yes" to confirm or call the office with appointment concerns.


Reminder Preview

Text reminders follow this formula:

Base Appointment Reminder:

Client First Name has an appointment (or virtual if it's an integrated telehealth appointment) with Provider Title & Last Name on Date at Time - Practice Timezone.

If a Practice Phone Number Exists:

To the end, we add " Questions? Please call Practice phone number"

If Confirmations Are Enabled:

To the end, we add " Reply 'Yes' to confirm"

Text Reminder Previews (variations):


Example Text Reminder:

  • A normal appointment
  • With a practice phone number
  • With confirmations enabled:


Another Example Text Reminder:

  • Without confirmations
  • For an integrated telehealth appointment
  • Without a practice phone number:


Example Email Reminder:

  • With confirmations
  • For an integrated telehealth appointment
  • With a practice phone number:


Reminder History

To view the reminder history for a particular client, go to their profile.

On the right-hand menu, click the button shown here:

⚠️ Note: If you're on a mobile device, scroll to the very bottom for the menu.

From there you'll see the following information:

  • Date of appointment
  • Reminder type
  • Sent to (actual email or phone #)
  • Reminder delivery date & time


Reminder Not Sent?

To maximize chances of a successful reminder delivery, please review our common list of hang ups:

Client Profile: make sure you have the reminder settings correct:

  • Ensure that reminders are configured properly and set to the right date
  • Ensure there are no typos (ex: @mgail.com instead of @gmail.com)
  • Confirm with the client that the phone number and email address on file are correct

Ensure the appointment is on the schedule in time:

If you enter an appointment into the schedule after the list is composed, no reminder will be sent because the appointment didn't exist at the time the list was composed.

For example:

  • Appointment is for Thursday, August 15th
  • You have a text reminder set to go out 1 day in advance
  • That means the reminder will go out Wednesday, August 15th
  • The reminder list is compiled in the early morning the day reminders go out
  • This appointment would need to be on the schedule by Tuesday, August 13th (midnight, going into the 14th)

The appointment reminder status only lists attempts to send a reminder:

Although our reminder delivery rate is above 99%, there are circumstances where messages will not be successfully delivered (ex: if clients are on the phone, out of service, or a client carrier marks it as delivered but it wasn't, etc). If the email goes to the Spam folder, or the text message is deleted unread, the system cannot track these problems.

Likewise, if a patient feigns not receiving a reminder in hopes of avoiding a no-show fee, we certainly cannot track this.

It is the client's responsibility to record and keep any appointments that have been made, as we cannot guarantee you they will successfully receive a reminder every time.

Note: It is best to have a written policy that states that reminders are sent as a courtesy, but that patients will be held responsible for missed appointments whether or not a reminder is sent. This helps to end disputes about whether or not a reminder was sent or received.

Ask your client to add the appointment on their phone calendar:

Adding an appointment to your own calendar can be an excellent way to avoid no shows and clients forgetting their appointment.

It also doesn't rely on external reminders, and clients can customize more reminder intervals.


Reminder Confirmations

We offer a few ways clients can confirm their sessions. By default when a reminder is enabled, confirmations are enabled by default.

Confirmation types (click to bring you to the section):

  1. Text
  2. Email
  3. Within the Client Portal

Once an appointment is scheduled and reminders configured, a reminder is automatically sent to the client in advance of their appointment based on type.


Text Confirmations

Enabling text reminders & confirmations allows the client to confirm the appointment by replying Yes to the automated text (not case sensitive).

If a client replies in any other way to the reminder text, we send them back the following non-configurable auto-reply: We don't understand. Reply "Yes" to confirm or call the office with appointment concerns.

Note: System reminders are hardcoded with certain information to include the least amount of identifiable information as possible per HIPAA recommendations for client privacy, and cannot be altered.

Additionally:

  • Reminder replies are not delivered to TherapyAppointment (or the Provider).
  • Clients should contact you using our free Messaging feature
  • If enabled, clients can cancel and reschedule appointments from their client portal

Email Confirmations

Enabling email reminders allows the client to confirm the appointment by clicking the blue button within the email reminder shown here:

Note: System reminders are hardcoded with certain information to include the least amount of identifiable information as possible per HIPAA recommendations for client privacy, and cannot be altered.

Additionally:

  • Reminder email replies are not delivered to TherapyAppointment (or the Provider).
  • Clients should contact you using our free Messaging feature
  • If enabled, clients can cancel and reschedule appointments from their client portal

Client Portal Confirmations

Clients can also sign into the portal to confirm their appointments. Clients can sign in either at your particular portal or here: language https://portal.therapyappointment.com

Once signed in, from the Dashboard, to the right of the appointment details, clients click shown here:

Additionally:

  • Clients should contact you using our free Messaging feature
  • If enabled, clients can cancel and reschedule appointments from their client portal


Displayed Confirmations

In the system, we display confirmations in a variety of areas.

Removed from Unconfirmed Appointments on Dashboard:

  • On the dashboard (bottom left section), we remove this appointment from the list:
Note: for more information, please check our our article here: Dashboard → Unconfirmed Appointments
  • The Provider (or staff) can see the appointment confirmation when viewing a scheduled appointment. Simply click on the appointment from either the Dashboard or Schedule and look to the right of the client name:

  • We also show the confirmation details if from the above popup of the appointment you click the top left Summary tab, then scroll to the bottom and click on the "Timeline" section which will expand the view and show you those details of the confirmation:


Unconfirmed Appointments

  • At the bottom left corner of the Dashboard, we list upcoming unconfirmed appointments
  • When a client confirms an appointment through the reminder, their name will be removed from this section
  • Article: Dashboard → Unconfirmed Appointments