Now that your practice is growing, you'll likely have more and more clinicians’ schedules to manage. We’ve put together a guide of what to expect along with a few tips to help keep your Group Practice calendar organized so that you can focus your energy on your clients.
Who can view what on the Calendar homepage?
One of the first aspects to point out about your group practice calendar is that each clinician’s schedule will be visible by the entire clinical and administrative staff. We’ve made the decision to keep this information accessible to avoid office locations accidentally being double-booked.
The only access level that will limit their calendar view will be the Clinician with Basic Access. They will be able to view all scheduled appointments, but they won't have access to view or edit the appointment details for clients they haven't been granted clinical access to.
On the other hand, both the biller and scheduler administrative roles will have access to view and edit all clients' appointments. This is important for adherence to HIPAA’s Meaningful Use clause that states that administrative staff should only have access to PHI that is required for them to do their jobs.
Be mindful - the more clinicians in your practice, the busier the calendar will be. Make use of the available filters that will simplify this:
- Encourage your clinicians to create an office location for each individual room - the calendar view can be filtered by location and/or by clinician, so using these when scheduling can help keep the calendar streamlined and can avoid clinicians accidentally altering each others' daily schedule.
- Note the different views that show either the upcoming month, week, or day. We recommend using the Day view as it breaks down each clinician's schedule clearly and will reduce an overlapping appearance.
Tip: If your practice is seeking more privacy surrounding their daily schedules, the best way to achieve this would be to open separate accounts.
Can we still use the Google Calendar 2-way Sync?
Your practice can use our Google Calendar 2-way sync. Each individual clinician is able to connect their own schedule to one Google Calendar account. However, there isn't a way to connect a SimplePractice calendar to multiple Google Calendar accounts. This means that clinicians in a group practice are not able to view each other's schedules through Google Calendar, unless there's one designated Google Calendar account that's shared.
How will appointments be scheduled?
Again, one of the most important features of the group calendar in your SimplePractice account to highlight is that each team member with access to a specific client will be able to adjust all of this client's appointment details, regardless of which clinician is holding the appointment.
This is something to be cautious of to make sure that appointments aren't accidentally re-scheduled. To help manage this, here are some tips that your practice may find useful:
- Make sure to have each clinician set their own calendar view times to avoid accidentally booking sessions for 3am as opposed to 3pm.
- Remember, anyone can accept an appointment request and adjust the time of an appointment. This will be tracked in the activity log, but it will be a good idea to have a protocol in place for who accepts appointment requests in your practice.
- Communication is key - a great way to communicate schedule adjustments effectively between team members is via Secure Messaging.
- Have clinicians stay on top of managing their own availability - this will lay the foundation for a well organized group practice calendar.
- Availability blocks must be created and set on their own, clinicians can decide which services they offer.
- If certain clinicians don't want their services to be bookable online, they can omit their availability such that all appointments must be booked by phone.
Having an organized calendar will be integral to running your group practice successfully, which is why we've allowed for so much customization in this feature. With these foundations in place, we hope you're able to build a scheduling system that allows your growing practice to thrive.