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Getting started as a group practice

Getting started as a group practice

This guide will provide all the necessary resources to help build the foundations for running a successful group practice. By familiarizing yourself with the features we offer, you'll be able to efficiently flow through our platform so that you and your team can spend more time with clients.

Below, you'll see the recommended walkthrough for setting up a new SimplePractice group practice account.

Note: The individual who started the account will be the Account Owner by default, and they'll have the ability to customize any of the settings outlined in this guide below. Access to these settings will vary depending on your role and permissions level. For more information on team member permissions, see Adding team members.

In this guide, we'll cover:


Practice settings

The first step to setting up your group practice account is to enter your licenses as well as personal, contact, and clinical information. To do this:

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  • Enter your Name and Date of birth 
  • Click Save  
  • Select the Security tab
  • Click Edit next to Contact information 

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  • Enter your password and click Continue
  • Enter your contact information 
    • The contact information entered on this page will be used by SimplePractice to get in touch with you going forward
    • Make sure that the phone number you enter is able to receive text messages
  • Click Save 

To enter your clinical information and licenses: 

  • Navigate to Settings > Profile > Clinical info 
  • Enter your Clinician Information and Licenses
    • The NPI Number entered should be your individual (Type 1) NPI, as this will appear as your Rendering Provider NPI in claims  

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  • Click Save changes

Once your clinical information has been entered, you can establish the practice settings for your group. All of the information included in your practice settings will be client-facing.

Note: Only Account Owners, practice managers, and clinicians with entire practice access can adjust these settings.

To start:

  • Navigate to Settings > Practice > Practice details
  • Enter your Practice Name and Practice Email
  • Select your Time Zone
    • This time zone will be set for the entire practice

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  • Choose a Cancellation Policy from the drop down
    • This setting will dictate how many hours before an appointment a client will be able to cancel before incurring a fee and whether they can cancel online via the Client Portal. You can also indicate If you’d prefer that your clients call to cancel. For more information, see Setting up your practice's cancellation policy.

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  • Add a Practice Logo, if applicable
  • Click Add Phone Number under Practice Phone to add your practice’s phone number
    • You can add multiple phone numbers

After you’ve added this information, you can add your practice’s location(s). To do this:

  • Scroll down to the Office location section
  • Click Add a location
    • You can add multiple office locations for your practice
  • Select the Search address dropdown and enter your address to automatically populate the Street, City, State, and ZIP
    • We recommend using this dropdown as it populates a 9-digit zip code for your address, which is often required for insurance claims

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  • Choose the appropriate Insurance Place of Service
    • This is important if you intend to bill insurance through SimplePractice, or if you’ll have clients seeking reimbursement from their insurance payer directly

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  • Click Save

When you scroll down on this page, you'll see a Video Office location listed, under the Telehealth section. This location can be used to schedule Telehealth appointments through SimplePractice. Telehealth is included for free on the Plus plan.

After adding your office locations, scroll down to Billing addresses and choose your Business Billing and Client Billing address. Your Business Billing address will be listed on your SimplePractice subscription invoices, and your Client Billing address will appear on client-facing billing documents.

For more information, see Adding a billing address.


Billing services and automations

After your practice settings have been established, you're ready to set up your billing automations

Note: Only Account Owners, practice managers, and clinicians with entire practice access can adjust these settings.

Client billing

To set up billing automations for client billing:

  • Navigate to Settings > Client billing and insurance > Client billing documents
  • Choose your automation settings for Invoices, Statements, Superbills, and General billing automations 
    • Keep in mind that these settings will apply for your entire practice
    • We recommend choosing Daily invoicing to keep these documents up to date and each client's balance fully accurate

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Insurance billing

To set up billing automations for insurance:

  • Navigate to Settings > Client billing and insurance > Insurance documents
  • Enter the Tax ID or SSN for your practice 
  • Type your group (Type 2) NPI under Organization NPI
  • Click Edit under Default

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  • Select Organization and enter the group’s billing provider information to populate on claims in box 33

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    • Individual clinician’s rendering provider NPIs will populate in box 24j from the information entered in their Clinical info settings
  • Click Save profile

If specific clinicians or payers require different sets of billing information, you can add billing profiles. For more information, see Managing billing profiles for insurance.  

Additionally, this page is where you can enable Modifiers, include the Service Facility Location on claim forms, and select whether multiple diagnosis codes will populate onto claims and superbills. For more information on using modifiers in SimplePractice, see Adding modifiers to claims and superbills.

Note: If you're not going to be using SimplePractice for billing insurance, you can leave this section blank.

Online Payments and AutoPay

You have the option to set up an Online Payments account in Settings > Payment processing > Online payments, so you can process client credit cards through SimplePractice. To do this, see Getting started with Online Payments.

Note: Only an Account Owner and practice manager will have access to the Online payments settings. 

You can also enable AutoPay, which will automatically charge clients for their invoiced amounts overnight. To learn more about AutoPay, see Getting started with AutoPay.

Services and products

To add and edit service codes to your account: 

  • Navigate to Settings > Services and products > Services
  • Click + Add service to create an additional service code

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When adding a new service or editing an existing one, the following information can be entered:

  • Service code
  • Description
  • Rate
  • Duration
  • Allow for online appointment requests
  • Clinicians offering the service

Similarly, you can add products for non-appointment items in Settings > Services and products > Products. Products can be added to invoices and charged through SimplePractice.

Note: For more information on creating and using service codes, see Creating and using service codes and products.


Best practices for billing

To streamline your billing on SimplePractice, view our recommended best practices for client billing and insurance billing below.

Client billing

Client billing in SimplePractice is based primarily on invoices. If a client is responsible for a fee, an invoice is created to add the fee to the client’s balance. Once the invoice is marked as paid, the client’s balance will be met according to the invoice’s amount.

Note: For more information on invoices and other billing documents, see Understanding invoices, statements, and superbills.

Any appointment fees that haven’t been invoiced will populate as Uninvoiced on the Client billing section of the client’s Overview page:

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We recommend the following:

  • Create one invoice for each appointment
  • Make any necessary changes to appointments as soon as possible
  • Collect payments in full at the time of session as often as possible
  • Use our automatic Daily invoicing feature to make sure that your clients' balances are always up-to-date

Note: If a client no-shows or late cancels, adjust the appointment status on the calendar fly-out as soon as possible so that the invoices will reflect correctly. For more information on changing appointment statuses, see How to change an appointment status.

AutoPay is a great way to automate your billing. To enable AutoPay, navigate to Settings > Payment processing > AutoPay, and switch the toggle on.

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Once enabled, you can return to this page any time to enable AutoPay for clients with credit cards on file. For more information, see Getting Started with AutoPay.

Insurance billing

As a group practice, you’ll typically submit claims under one group (Type 2) NPI in box 33. If you’re the Account Owner, practice manager, or clinician with entire practice access, you can enter this NPI at Settings > Client billing and insurance > Insurance documents.

Tip: You can also enter other information for box 33 on this page. For more information, see Insurance billing.

Each clinician can enter their individual (Type 1) NPI in Settings > Profile > Clinical info to populate in box 24j. If you have clinicians in your practice that bill with their individual NPI in box 33, you can set up additional billing profiles. For an overview of this process, see Managing billing profiles for insurance.

If you intend to file claims through SimplePractice, you may need to submit enrollments at Settings > Client billing and insurance > Payers. To receive Payment Reports (ERAs), you’ll need to submit enrollments. For more information, see Submitting enrollments to file claims and receive Payment Reports

To get started with insurance billing and submitting enrollments, we recommend viewing our Insurance Billing with SimplePractice on-demand class.

If you have team members who will be billing insurance using a supervisor’s credentials, see Billing insurance under your supervisor’s credentials.


Team member roles

Note: Only Account Owners and practice managers can add and manage team members. 

Once you have your practice and billing settings established, you're ready to start adding additional team members to your SimplePractice account, and assigning them clinical and non-clinical roles. To add a team member, see Adding a new team member.

Clinician roles

Clinical roles consist of any team member who's providing services to clients. There are 5 different clinician roles with varying access levels:

Clinician role Access level
Account Owner
  • This is the highest access level, assigned to the team member who started the SimplePractice account 
  • Can edit team member accounts and any settings that affect the practice as a whole
  • Can access all client data
Clinician with entire practice access
  • Can access all clients, documentation, billing, and practice financial reports throughout your practice
Clinician with full client list access
  • Can see your practice’s full client list, but can only see notes for their own clients
Clinician with billing access
  • Can access and bill their own clients
Clinician with basic access
  • Can access documentation for their own clients, but can’t see any billing information

Non-clinical roles

These roles can be granted to team members who won’t be providing services to clients, such as an office manager, schedulers, or billers. There are 4 different non-clinical roles:

Non-clinical role Access level
Practice manager
  • Can manage practice settings and can be granted additional access to clinical documentation and practice financial information, as needed
Practice biller
  • Can manage billing for all clients
  • Can access most practice financial reports
Practice scheduler
  • Can manage scheduling and online appointment requests
  • Can assign clinicians to all clients
Supervisor
  • Can sign notes and review documentation for pre-licensed clinicians they supervise. 
  • If this team member also sees clients, you can grant them a clinical role in addition to the Supervisor role
  • For more information on supervision in SimplePractice, see Supervision

Note: If you have non-clinical team members who don't need access to client files, you can add them as a practice biller or practice scheduler. Additionally, team members can have multiple non-clinician roles. For more information on each role, see Team member roles and access levels.

We recommend adding additional clinicians during your trial so you can see how SimplePractice operates with multiple team members.


Calendar

An important step in setting up your SimplePractice account is establishing your practice's calendar view. This view should include any hours that an appointment can be booked with a clinician in your practice. To do this:

  • Navigate to Settings > Scheduling > Calendar
  • Under Calendar display, choose the hours that'll be visible in your practice's account 

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  • Click Save changes

Note: Only Account Owners, practice managers, and clinicians with entire practice access can adjust the practice's calendar display. If a clinician schedules an appointment that falls outside of the display hours selected, they won't be able to locate that appointment on the calendar and will need to have the view adjusted by an account administrator.

You can also choose the Cancellation policy for your practice. To do this, click the dropdown menu under its section.

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This setting will determine how many hours before an appointment a client will be able to cancel before incurring a fee, and whether they can cancel online via the Client Portal. 

You can also indicate If you’d prefer that your clients call to cancel. For more information, see Setting up your practice's cancellation policy.

Each clinician in the practice also has the ability to sync their SimplePractice calendar with their personal calendar. For more information on how to utilize our calendar sync, see:

Our calendar sync feature links your SimplePractice calendar with your personal calendar. However, you won’t be able to sync your work calendar to multiple external calendars.

Tip: For best practices on using your calendar in a group practice, see Using your calendar in a group practice.


Client Portal settings

Once you've invited your team to join your SimplePractice account and set up your calendar, you're ready to set up your practice's Client Portal. This is where a client can schedule appointments, complete intake forms, and pay for invoices.

Note: To learn more about the Client Portal, see Setting up the Client Portal.

To enable the Client Portal:

  • Navigate to Settings > Scheduling > Client portal permissions 
  • Scroll up to the Default domain section
  • Click Edit
  • Enter the URL for your Client Portal
    • The URL you choose is going to be the Client Portal link for your entire practice, so use a URL that's representative of all your clinicians
    • This can be entered by the Account Owner or a practice manager

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Note: Instead of using the default domain we provide, you can connect a custom domain hosted by a third party. See Setting a domain for more information.

On the same page, you can enable and set up online appointment requests, which can be customized based on service, clinician, and other factors. For more information on this, see Enabling online appointment requests

Note: If you enable Monarch, your Availability for online appointment requests will sync with your Monarch profile. For more information on setting up Availability, see Managing your Availability.

You can also check the box next to Allow clients to upload documents to Client Portal.

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Documentation

SimplePractice offers a variety of clinician and client-facing documentation, which you can customize for your group practice’s needs.

Template library

Pre-built templates are available for scored measures, intake questionnaires, progress notes, diagnosis and treatment plans, and other various documents. To see what pre-built templates we offer, see Template options in our Template Library.

In Settings > Documentation > Template library, you can view and add pre-built templates to your template library. Once added, you can customize and duplicate these as needed. To preview and add templates to your template library, see Using our pre-built templates

Note: This page is only accessible to the Account Owner, practice managers, and clinicians with entire practice access.

Once you’ve added the templates to your library, you can determine which templates will be shareable with your clients by checking the box next to the template(s) in question.

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Intake documents

In Settings > Documentation > Intake documents, you can customize the consent forms and uploaded files that you can share with your clients. For more information on these documents, as well as intake forms, see Using consent documents and intake forms.

You can also determine which documents will be selected by default when you’re first sharing intakes with clients. To do this, check the box next to the document(s) in question.

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The Intake documents settings also includes options for the Demographics form and Credit card information form, which can be used to collect your clients’ contact and payment information. For more information on these forms, see Sending the Demographics form and Credit Card Information form.

Sharing documents with clients

To share forms with your client, see: 

All clinicians, practice managers, and practice schedulers can share forms with clients. For more information on each team member’s ability to share forms, see Team member roles and access levels.

Business files

An Account Owner and practice manager can upload practice files to the Business files page, and share these files with certain team member roles. To do this, see Managing business files.

Note: Team members can only view or download the files that have been shared with them. Clients won’t have access to these files.


Supervision

In this section, you can set up your supervisor and supervisee settings.

Adding supervisors and supervisees

You can choose which team members will supervise and which will be supervised. To grant the supervisor role to a team member, see Updating a team member’s role.

After you've designated your supervisor(s), you can choose your supervisees: 

  • Navigate to Settings > Team > Team members
  • Click a team member’s name
    • Next to the team member, you can also click the 3 horizontal dots > Edit team member
  • Next to Clinical info, select Edit

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  • Toggle Under supervision on
  • Select their supervisor from the Supervisor dropdown menu

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  • Click Save
  • Repeat for all other supervised team members as needed

Although Account Owners and practice managers can designate supervisees and supervisors, a supervisee can also select their supervisor from their account. To do this: 

  • Navigate to Settings > Profile > Clinical info
  • Check the box for I'm pre-licensed under supervision
  • Select the supervisor from the Supervisor dropdown menu

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Reviewing and signing notes

When supervised clinicians complete a progress note, diagnosis and treatment plan, or assessment, they sign and share the documentation with their supervisor. Their supervisor will then request edits from the clinician, or sign and lock the documentation.

Supervisors can access the Supervision page from the calendar, which will display outstanding notes that still require their signature. They'll also see a counter next to Supervision representing how many documentation items are waiting for their review.

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Tip: Supervisors can also view notes they’ve already signed under the My signed notes tab.

This counter will increase each time the supervisee has signed and shared a progress note, diagnosis and treatment plan, or assessment. It will decrease when the supervising clinician unlocks, requests edits, or signs the documentation.

Note: For details on how to sign and review notes as a supervisor, see Adding a supervisor to review and sign notes.

One way to ensure that your clinicians’ documentation meets all necessary standards is by using Wiley Treatment Planners. This will allow clinicians to enter a diagnosis and treatment plan that's standardized to most insurance payers and designed to document notes swiftly and accurately.

Additionally, locking a note will effectively sign and timestamp the note. Make sure that your documentation is up to standards in the event of an audit or a document request from a third party.

Monitoring the activity of supervisees

A team member can monitor the documentation status for clients’ appointments using the Appointment status report. To do this:

  • Navigate to Analytics > Reports > Appointment status 
  • Click More
  • Toggle Include Documentation on

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This report will show you all appointments that have taken place within a specific date range, as well as the status of the associated progress notes: No Note, Unlocked, Locked, or Supervision.

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Practice billers can also view and use this page to track if a progress note has been written prior to submitting a claim for an appointment.

For more information on this report, see Navigating the Appointment status report.

Note: Supervisors will also receive reminders if their supervisee’s client is missing a progress note or diagnosis and treatment plan.


Professional Website 

The Professional Website is designed to provide a simple and clean foundation for you to showcase your practice and engage with your client base. An Account Owner or practice manager can customize a practice’s Professional Website. 

To get started:

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The domain for your Professional Website will default to the Client Portal domain at clientsecure.me

Tip: If you have an external domain through a third party, you can set this up as your Custom Domain. For more information, see Custom Domain FAQs.

If you have the Professional Website enabled, your website will function as a landing page where existing clients can access their Client Portal. 

Note: The Professional Website is included at no additional cost on the Plus and Essential plans. For more information on setting up and customizing your Professional Website, see Setting up your Professional Website.


Monarch

Monarch is an online directory where therapists can connect with prospective clients and maintain a cohesive online presence. Monarch is seamlessly integrated with SimplePractice. 

Every mental health clinician in your account has the opportunity to have a Monarch profile. Group accounts can have different workflows to field appointment requests, initial consultations, and send intake forms. Below, we’ll cover the two most common approaches.

Note: If a team member has an assigned specialty that’s not supported on Monarch, their Monarch profile will be disabled by default. To set up a Monarch profile, they’ll need to be assigned a supported specialty on SimplePractice. To learn more about supported specialties, see Who can list on Monarch?

Clinicians manage their own appointment requests and intakes

With this workflow, the Account Owner or practice manager will enable Monarch for a supported clinician, and that clinician will manage their Monarch profiles and inquiries individually.

To first turn on Monarch for your practice, navigate to Marketing > Directory, then click Turn on directory access. From here, you can view your clinicians’ profiles by selecting Manage clinician profiles.

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Once you’re in the Clinician Profiles page, follow the steps below to allow a clinician to manage their Monarch profile:

  • Hover over the clinician you'd like to give access and click Manage

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  • Select Full Access
  • Click Save

Repeat these steps for each clinician you’d like to have listed on the Monarch Directory. If you opt for this approach, we recommend that each clinician enter details about the practice in the introduction. To do this, see Writing an authentic biography.

Administrators manage appointment requests and assign them to clinicians

With this workflow, the Account Owner, a clinician with entire practice access, or a practice scheduler will manage online appointment requests and assign them to clinicians based on their availability or other factors that would make them the best fit. 

If an admin will be fielding contact submissions, we recommend that this admin have an email address where they can receive submissions. Each clinician will then enter the email into the Email for Contact Form field for their profile. 

To do this, the clinician can: 

  • Navigate to Marketing > Profile
  • Click Edit next to Contact options

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  • Enter the admin’s email under Email for Contact Form

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  • Click Save

If several or all clinicians are in different areas, individual locations can be established for each clinician with their name in the location title. This way, therapy seekers can see which location is associated with the clinician they're viewing.

To add a clinician name to a location:

  • Navigate to Settings > Practice > Practice details
  • Click Edit next to the location in question

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  • Enter the clinician's name under Office Name
  • Select Show Address under Public View

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  • Click Save

Note: For more information on customizing locations, see Adding office locations.

Each clinician should also establish their online appointment request Availability, as this determines which appointments will be available for therapy seekers on Monarch. If available appointments aren't appearing for a clinician, they should check whether they've set up their Availability properly.

If there will only be one Monarch profile for the practice, it's best to manage all online appointment request availability through one account, such as the Account Owner’s. In this scenario, only the Account Owner will need to establish the practice’s Availability. 

For more information on setting up Availability, see Managing your Availability.

To learn more about Monarch, see:

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