Confirming Appointments by SMS

  • 1
  • Article
  • Updated 5 months ago
Front Desk makes it easy to automatically change appointment statuses when clients respond to SMS appointment reminders. For Front Desk users that require a Yes reply to an SMS appointment reminder to confirm an appointment, this is a great tool that can be used to automatically change the appointment status to Confirmed. If your preference is not to request a confirmation for appointments, you may consider this for new patient, extended or long appointments when a no-show can have an impact on a practitioner’s work efficiency. 

To set this up, make sure you have a Confirmed appointment status in your system. To do this, go to System Information > Statuses and create a Confirmed appointment status if needed.



To enable Front Desk to automatically change an appointment status when receiving an SMS reply, go to System > Standard SMS Replies.



Create a Standard SMS Reply by clicking Add and then set up what reply Front Desk should be expecting e.g. Yes and what you would like the Appointment Status to be changed to Confirmed.



Edit your SMS Appointment Reminder template to include instructions for your patient when replying by going to System > Standard Message > Standard SMS.



Best practice is to have an alternative to the client replying Yes, however, you don’t want a patient to take the easy option to cancel by SMS. We suggest that you make the alternative option rescheduling by calling the practice, as per the example below. 



When a patient replies Yes their appointment status will now automatically turn to Confirmed and you will see the appointment status colour (on the left of the appointment) change in your appointment book.

Status: Patient Not Confirmed


Status: Confirmed



By default, Front Desk has an appointment status labelled Patient Not Arrived. You may consider changing this to Patient Not Confirmed when requesting appointment confirmations.
Photo of Steven

Steven, Business Care

  • 261 Posts
  • 74 Reply Likes

Posted 11 months ago

  • 1
Photo of SydSportsMed

SydSportsMed

  • 73 Posts
  • 20 Reply Likes
This is great, but what happens if a patient replies with something else, such as "No".  Even if you don't put that in the sms as a reply option, people notoriously don't read the full message.
Photo of Steven

Steven, Business Care

  • 261 Posts
  • 74 Reply Likes
Hi SydSportsMed. For professional consultations, we suggest that you should not encourage patients to respond 'No' as it would be an easy out to cancel an appointment. Having said this, if they do respond 'No', you will receive their SMS through the return path in Front Desk as a message. At which time you will realise they have responded 'No' and action it appropriately, e.g. call them. If you do want to change the status of the appointment when they respond 'No', you can create an additional appointment status called "Has responded No" (for example) which will appear in the appointment book and you can respond accordingly. You may also want to set one up for "N". You can have as many standard replies as you like mapping to appointment statuses.