Emergency Contacts

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You can add "contacts" to a patient's profile to denote emergency contacts, next of kin, or other familial or social relationships.

Contacts can be set to receive reminders whenever the patient receives a reminder; can be assigned as the payer of an invoice on the patient's behalf; can pay for the patient's invoices using their own card/payment details; can be set to receive communications whenever you email the patient; and be set to appear on the calendar whenever the patient has an appointment.

You can also set contacts to be Medicare claimants so that they receive rebates on the patient's behalf.

A patient profile with their contacts listed in the Contact Details section

Each contact can be assigned to more than one patient, and each patient can have multiple contacts. You can see the full list of patients that each contact is assigned to in the Contact Details section of the contact's profile (shown above).

Tip

Adding parents/guardians as contacts is useful to keep track of patients who may be children or dependants. You can opt to set these contacts as the payer and set them up to receive reminders and communications on behalf of the patient.

Note

Any "Full" or "Contact Only" profile can be set as a contact. Dependants cannot be set as a contact. Please see Patient Profile Types for more information.

Primary contacts

Each patient can have one contact assigned as their primary contact.

Primary contacts can be set as the default payer for a patient's invoices, and any listed contact can be copied into any email communications sent to the patient, such as when emailing invoices or clinical notes.

You can also configure your calendar preferences (by clicking the Cogwheel icon on the calendar screen) so that the primary contact is shown on the calendar whenever the patient has an appointment:

CalendarPreferences_PatientNamesPrimaryContact.png

Contact profiles versus patient profiles

When a contact is added to a patient's profile, a separate profile is created for the contact (but not added to your Patient List). You can access the contact's profile by clicking the contact's name in the Contact Details section of the patient's profile. You can edit the contact's details as required.

If in time the contact also becomes a patient, all you need to do is change the contact's status from "Contact" to "Current". This changes the contact profile into a patient profile and makes the profile appear in your Patient List.

To view a list of contacts (as opposed to patients), please see I can't find a contact/patient. Can I create a list of contacts?.

Adding a contact to a patient profile

When adding a contact to the patient's profile, you have the following options:

  • Setting the contact to receive reminders in relation to the patient's appointments

  • Sharing the contact's card, which allows you to select the contact's card when processing payments for the patient. The card details themselves remain confidential.

  • Setting the contact as the primary contact. The primary contact can be optionally set as the default payer for this patient's invoices or be sent reminders and other communications on the patient's behalf, such as when emailing invoices or clinical notes.

To add a contact to a patient profile:

  1. Navigate to the patient's profile by clicking their name from your Patient List, from an invoice or from an appointment.

  2. In the Contact details section, click Add Contact.

    PatientProfile_ContactAdd.png
  3. The Add Contact pop-up appears. Select a Relationship and Contact Type for your records.

    The Add Contact pop-up, with options to let the contact receive the patient's reminders or make this the primary contact.
  4. In the Name field, type the contact's name. If the contact has been previously added or is also one of your patients, select their name from the drop-down menu that appears. Otherwise click to add them as a new contact.

  5. Enter the contact's phone number(s) and email address.

  6. Select whether to enable or disable reminders for this contact - if enabled, the contact will also be sent a reminder whenever the patient is sent a reminder. This is particularly useful for parents/guardians.

  7. Select whether to enable or disable card sharing. If enabled, you can process payments for this patient using the contact's card/payment details. Card sharing only applies to this specific patient-contact relationship.

  8. (Optional) Tick the checkbox to make this the primary contact. The primary contact can be optionally set as the default payer for this patient's invoices or be sent reminders and other communications on the patient's behalf, such as when emailing invoices or clinical notes.

  9. (Optional) Add notes in the General Notes field. These notes will appear in a tooltip next to the contact's name on the patient's profile. You can hover your cursor over the tooltip to easily see the notes.

    In the Contact Details section, hovering over the tooltip next to a contact displays a note
  10. Click Save.

You may also wish to add the contact's card or claiming details on the Funding tab of their profile.

Enabling appointment reminders for a contact

Whenever you add an emergency contact for a patient, you can enable reminders so that they receive appointment reminders for the patient's appointments.

To enable reminders for a particular contact:

  1. Navigate to the patient's profile.

  2. In the Contact Details section, click the Edit (pencil) icon for the contact.

    PatientProfile_ContactEdit.png
  3. Under Reminders, select Enabled.

    The Edit Contact pop-up. The Reminders radio option has "Enabled" selected.
  4. Click Save.

RESULT: Reminders will automatically be sent to the contact for the patient's appointments according to your reminder settings.

Contact funding information

Contacts can have their own card details and claimant information which can be used to pay for invoices or claim rebates.

Adding a contact's card details allows you to process a patient's invoices using the contact's card if you have enabled card sharing for the patient-contact relationship. This requires you to have enabled card sharing when adding/editing the contact from the patient's profile:

The Edit Contact pop-up. The option "Share Credit Cards" is set to "Enabled".

To add card and claimant information for a contact, click the Funding tab of the contact's profile. The process is identical to adding funding information for a patient.

Billing a contact on an invoice

You can assign invoices to be automatically billed to the primary contact instead of the patient by default. This allows you to address the invoice to a parent or guardian instead of a patient directly. Please see the linked article for details on how to set up the default payer and invoice automation.

You can also manually select to bill a contact on any given invoice. To do so:

  1. From an invoice, click the cogwheel icon at the top-right hand side of the page.

  2. In the Payer field, ensure the payer is set to Patient.

  3. In the Contact/Family Member field, select the contact you wish to bill.

    InvoiceSummary_Contact.png
  4. Click Save.

RESULT: The invoice is now billed to the contact instead of the patient. When emailing the invoice, you can now select to email it to the contact payer, the patient or another email address:

The Send Invoice Email pop-up with the Recipient radio options for Contact Payer, Patient or Other highlighted.

Alternatively, you can choose to bill the patient but use a contact's card to pay for the invoice.

Paying for an invoice using a contact's card

If a contact has card/payment details stored on their profile, you can process a patient's payments using one of their contact's card details instead of the patient's card details. This allows you process payments for a patient using a contact's card without billing the contact directly on the invoice.

To do this, you must enable card sharing for the specific patient-contact relationship when adding/editing a contact for a patient. Card sharing applies only to the specific patient-contact relationship; if you want multiple patients to be able to use the contact's card to pay, you must enable it for each patient-contact relationship separately:

The Edit Contact pop-up. The option "Share Credit Cards" is set to "Enabled".

Image: Enabling card sharing when editing a patient-contact relationship (expand image)

Once card sharing is enabled, you can select the card you want to use whenever you process a payment:

The Add Payment Details pop-up. The Credit Card drop-down menu has multiple cards belonging to different contacts.

Image: Selecting a contact's card details to pay for an invoice (expand image)

Including Contacts When Emailing Patients (CC and BCC)

Any of a patient's contacts can be copied into any email you send to the patient. Simply use the "CC patient contact" (or "CC client contact" depending on your patient/client terminology) and/or "BCC patient contact" fields when sending an email and select the contacts you wish to include:

The Send Email pop-up has fields labeled CC client contact and BCC client contact, with client's mother selected.

When a contact receives an email in this way, it appears in their Message History with a note that they received the email as the patient's contact:

MessageHistory_ReceivedAsContact.png

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I ensure that a contact receives campaigns I send to a patient?

When you are about to send the campaign to patients,  ensure that you tick the "Notify Contacts" checkbox in the "Save Campaign" pop-up. This will send the communication to the patient's contacts as well as the patient.

Campaigns_NotifyContacts.png

How can I ensure that a contact receives one-off communications I send to a patient?

If you are sharing a clinical note with the patient, there is an option to CC in one of the patient's contacts.

For other communication, you will need to manually email the contact.

I can't find a contact/patient. Can I create a list of contacts?

Contacts will not appear on the patient list, so if you set a patient's status to Contact, they will not appear in your patient list.

You can create a list of contacts assigned to your practice by running a patient report with the report type set to Contact. To do so:

  1. Click Reports > Patient.

  2. Click New Report at the top-right of the page.

  3. In the Report Type field, select Contact.

  4. Click Run.

RESULT: A list of contacts will be created as a report. You can click on any contact to go to their profile and change a contact to a patient if required.

How do I see communications that a contact received specifically as someone's contact?

In the Message History section of a contact's profile, tick the checkbox labelled "Include all contacts". This will include communication sent to the contact that they received specifically as another person's contact.

How can I change a contact to a patient in Halaxy?

In order to change the status of a contact to patient, all you need to do is go to their contact profile and change their status from "Contact" to "Current". To do so:

  1. Navigate to the contact's profile.

  2. Click Edit at the top-right of the page.

  3. In the Personal Details section, click the Status drop-down menu and change the status from "Contact" to "Current".

    PatientProfile_StatusCurrent.png

RESULT: The contact profile will be changed to a patient profile and will appear in your Patient List. Note that once the profile has been changed to a patient profile, they still remain listed as a contact and will continue to receive reminders and campaigns according to your settings.

An emergency contact is already an existing patient in my practice. Will I have to create a new contact profile for this patient?

No. When you are adding the contact to the patient's profile, simply type the name of the contact in the Name field - because the contact already exists as a patient in your Halaxy, the contact's name should automatically appear in the drop-down menu. Click the name to link the contact using their existing patient profile.

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