FAQs: Reminders, forms, and special actions

This article covers frequently asked questions about reminders, forms, and special actions. It includes postcard reminders, automatic reminders—including the combined reminders email feature—and appointment reminders.  

See these articles for more information:

 Create a form

 Create and send a reminder

 Set up combined reminders email

 Send reminder postcards using the IDEXX Reminder Service

 

DEFINITIONS

A reminder is something you can add to a product or service to indicate when the product or service is next due for a specific patient. In Neo, reminders appear as notifications on the patient record, as well as on the patient's Reminders tab.
A reminder communication can be an email, SMS, postcard, or letter sent to a pet owner that shows them which products and services their pets are due for.
To learn more, see Add a reminder.

Think of a form as the content used in reminders, handouts, consent forms, and certificates. You can also think of forms as templates that help you deliver a consistent look and feel in every client communication.

A special action is a link between products and other areas of Neo, including reminders, callback tasks, forms, and patient special fields.
In the case of a reminder special action, you can use a special action to automatically create and/or delete a reminder for products and services, like a rabies vaccination, when the invoice is closed (marked ready to be paid).To learn more, see Manage special actions.

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The combined reminders email combines all upcoming and past due reminders for a client's pets into a single email. This feature also gives you control over the time and day of week that emails are sent.
 

TROUBLESHOOTING COMBINED REMINDERS EMAILS

There are a few possible reasons:
  • The patient is not yet marked as deceased in Neo.
  • The reminder was sent before the patient was marked as deceased in Neo.
Once a patient is marked as deceased or inactive, reminders will not be sent. This may be a good time to review the special actions associated with your euthanasia and disposal products.

  • The email could have been sent before the appointment.
  • If special actions are not correctly set up on your products, reminders will not be updated when products are invoiced.
    For example, when a rabies vaccine is invoiced the special action should be set up to create an updated reminder and delete any existing reminders from the patient's record.

No. Once a reminder is included in the combined reminders email, any automatic individual email reminder settings are inactivated and can not be edited unless the reminder is no longer included in the combined reminders email.
If you had selected an email form for the reminder prior to setting up combined reminders, you can still manually send an email reminder by going to Reminders > All Due Reminders, selecting the reminder you would like to send, and clicking Options > Print Letters > Send email.
Automatic SMS reminders are not affected by combined reminders email settings.

As soon as a reminder is included in the combined reminders email settings, the email form for the reminder is unavailable. You can not edit the email form unless the reminder is no longer included in the combined reminders email.
 
Remember that SMS reminders are not affected by combined reminders email settings.

The last send dates and times sent will not update or increase.

The combined reminders email uses an automatically generated system form, so there is no editing required or available. You can change the subject of the email (go to Administration > Forms & Certificates and under Reminder Reports, select combined_reminder_email. You can also add a message using the Reminder Message field on the form. When you preview the form, the text you entered is populated into the area where the [reminder_message] variable is.
 

TROUBLESHOOTING SMS (TEXT) MESSAGES

This depends on your practice settings and type of SMS message.
  • Automatic reminder SMS will always send automatically without needing approval.
  • Client and patient SMS will send automatically if the Send SMS Immediately drop-down list in Administration > Branch Settings is set to Yes. If set to No, the message must be approved before it can be sent.
  • The following messages will always require approval before sending:
    • Manual reminder SMS
    • SMS from appointments
    • SMS from procedures
    • Mass SMS from reports

The phone number the client sees is 812-202-4900.

No. Direct replies to SMS messages will not get back to you. Your outgoing SMS message should ask clients to call the practice if they have any questions.

  • Yes, but there is no indication to your practice that the client has unsubscribed. If the client unsubscribes, the practice will receive an unknown error in the SMS Manager when they try to send that client a SMS message in the future.
    Note: If the client does not want to receive SMS messages, the recommendation is to record the mobile phone number in the Additional Information area on the client record instead of the Mobile No. field.
  • The client can unsubscribe by replying back to 812-202-4900 with the message STOP. To resubscribe, the client can reply back to 812-202-4900 with the message START.

  • The client’s mobile number may be invalid or missing from the Mobile No. field.
  • The client may have unsubscribed from receiving messages by replying STOP.
  • For SMS reminders not sending, there may not be an SMS form selected for that reminder type.
    • Edit the reminder type and select a form for SMS.

HOW DO I...

The combined reminders email feature combines one or more patients' reminders into a single email for your client.

Click the All Due Reminders button on the Reminders page (Administration > Reminders) to see all due reminders for the practice.
Note: If you would like to review SMS reminders before they are sent, change the Send SMS Immediately option to No. This will hold SMS messages in the SMS Manager area (Administration > SMS Manager) for review by a manager before they are sent.
To learn more, see Manage and send reminders.

Open the Reminders tab on the patient's record. From here you can add new reminders, or click the menu button in the Actions column to edit or delete upcoming reminders for an individual patient.


See the article Set up reminders for a vaccination series for full details.

GENERAL

After you add a product with a reminder special action to a consultation, the patient reminder is created, updated, or deleted when the invoice is closed (marked ready to be paid).
For example, if you add the Rabies Canine 3 Year Vaccine product, any reminders associated with this product will be automatically updated when the invoice has been closed.
Note: If you reopen the invoice and edit the product line item date, the reminder due date will be automatically updated when you close the invoice again.
IMPORTANT: Deleting a product that triggered a reminder from a consultation will not delete the reminder: you will need to manually delete that reminder.

After you add a product with a callback task special action to a consultation, the callback task is created when the invoice is closed (marked ready to be paid) for the user selected in the product's special action setup.

For example, if you add a surgery or anesthesia product, any callback task associated with this product will be automatically added to the Callbacks tab of the user selected in the product's special action setup.
Note: If no callback user is designated in the product's callback task special action setup, the callback task will be assigned to the consultation line provider. 
IMPORTANT: Deleting a product that triggered a callback task from a consultation will not delete the callback task from the callback user's task list: you will need to manually close that task, as applicable.

Callback task notes can be viewed and edited from the task list Callbacks tab on the Home page.
To edit a callback task note, locate the callback task card, click the menu button, and select Edit Callback.

Callback tasks are added to the task list after the invoice is closed (marked ready to be paid).

Yes. If you would like to review SMS reminders before they are sent, go to Administration > Branch Settings and change the Send SMS Immediately option to No. This will hold SMS messages in the SMS Manager area (Administration > SMS Manager) for review by a manager before they are sent. Note that Send SMS Immediately applies only to client and patient messages.

The System Admin permission is required to set up combined reminders or to edit any existing reminder settings.

FORMS 

Part of setting up a reminder is selecting the form that will be used when the reminder is sent, so the form must be set up before you can set up a reminder. If the reminder is included in the combined reminders email, you will be able to select an SMS form but not an email form.

Create a new form (Administration > Forms & Certificates > Create a new Form) and enter your reminder communication content there.

Save your reminder forms in the Reminder Reports group:


Yes. Use the link button to add or remove hyperlinks.

Form variables automatically pull information about clients, patients, procedures, practices, etc. Using form variables is a great way to personalize your reminders, for example with client and patient names.
Note: You must use form variables that are related to the form you are creating. For example, you cannot use an invoice variable on a reminder form.

Click the image icon to add an image. Use the [currentbranch.logo_url] form variable in the URL field to automatically insert your logo in your reminder communication.

Yes, click the Preview link at the bottom of the form page to see how your reminder will look to the client.