Setting up the cron job is easy. I generally have the cron job running twice a day. I was running every 15 minutes but I had an issue of sending multiple messages. I have added the ability to send two-way messaging , sending messages to multiple handsets per patient, and I use dataTables to help with the interface and usability. Note: I am still in the process of making more improvements and cleaning up my code. It should be made available for public use soon.
Here are some screenshots:
The following screenshot is the reporting tool. Select the date of the appointment and it will show the status of the message. The system this was designed for needed the ability to send messages up to four relatives of the patients since this is for a pediatrician’s office. We do not send SMS messages unless the HIPAA status is a “Y”. Also, the relatives must be listed as a HIPAA “Y” to receive messages. SMS messages are always sent to a patient and their relatives unless the appointment has “Confidential” in the appointment type. In the case of a confidential appointment, no SMS reminder is sent at all.
Clicking on alert will show the history of messaging. It also lists the relatives and HIPAA status. By hitting “reply” the office can respond to the patient. In this particular case the “Recent Messages” shows the history of the last three months.
If you are looking for a particular patient within a date range you can use the dynamic search tool that is a capability of Datatables.
The editing tool has auto fill variables to make creating a custom message for a specific appointment type easy to use. The green area shows what a patient named “test patient” would see. If the end user forgets to put Name, Date, Time, it won’t let you save the message. Once the variable is used, the button highlights in green.
There are more improvements that still need to be made but this project is chugging along.