A patient referral occurs when a patient’s medical care is transferred from one veterinary professional or clinic to another. Creating and using patient referrals allows for ease of medical record transfer and communication while maintaining a comprehensive record of patient care. A new patient referral should be created when a patient’s medical care has been transferred to your veterinary professionals or clinic, typically for speciality or secondary medical care.
Please note the patient referrals function is designed to receive referred patients. If you are referring a patient for care to another veterinary professional, you will want to use the patient history functionality to send the patient records by email or print to the outside hospital.
Additional set-up is required by our Provet Cloud Support team. Please contact our support team to discuss add-on costs and arrange for feature set-up. Hospital mode as well as patient referral settings must be enabled to access full patient referral functions.
Creating a Referring Organisation/Veterinarian
A referring organization or veterinarian must be previously created prior to being available for selection during the new patient referral creation process. To create a new referral organization or veterinarian, you will begin by following the same steps as when creating a new client, however, you will need to indicate the “client” as either a referring organization or referring veterinarian by using the available checkboxes, as shown below. Either the first name & last name fields can be utilized or the organization name of the referral organization/veterinarian.
Creating a New Patient Referral
To create a new patient referral, first, navigate to the “Patient referrals” dashboard which is accessible by selecting the corresponding tab from the main dashboard page.
Within the patient referral dashboard, you are able to create a new patient referral or view previously created patient referrals using the status filters. Referrals can also be searched for by utilizing the extended search feature.
Next, select the green “New patient referral” button, located in the upper right-hand corner, to open the new patient referral dialogue. Below is an example of a new patient referral dialogue.
Within the new patient referral dialogue, begin by defining the client and patient information for whom the referral is being created by selecting within the corresponding fields. This information will be required in order to move forward with the new patient referral creation. It is possible to create a new client and patient from this dialogue as well by selecting the “New” button located next to the client field, as shown in the above screen example.
Next, define the referring organization and/or veterinarian. This information will also be required to complete the new patient referral.
You can adjust the referral creation date, time and status if needed by using the appropriate fields located in the upper right-hand corner of the dialogue page. The referral status field can be used for future reference and referral identification.
Any additional referral notations can be included at the bottom of the patient referral dialogue within the section titled “Referral notes.” Any files or attachments can be added by dropping them within the dotted section “Drop files here to upload.”
Finally, save the patient referral by selecting either “Save” or “Save and link to appointments” located at the button of the screen.
Scheduling a patient referral
If “Save & link to appointments” is selected, you will be transferred to the appointment calendar page where the referral appointment can be scheduled. Appointment scheduling will function the same as when scheduling other appointments directly from the appointment calendar. Clicking on the desired time slot of the appropriate day for the appointment will open the new appointment dialogue.
The patient referral will automatically be linked to the scheduled appointment and displayed within the new appointment card. However, the option to unlink the referral is also available when scheduling if needed. An example of a linked appointment card is shown below.
Save and schedule the new appointment by selecting “Save”. Next, select “Save” within the blue referral prompt to return to the patient referral dialogue and save all changes, or select the drop-down arrow to select “Save & stay” to stay on the appointment calendar. An example is shown below.
Editing a Patient Referral
To edit a previously created patient referral, first access the previously created patient referral by searching for the referral from within the patient referrals dashboard.
TIP: This workflow is useful to locate referrals if no future appointment has been scheduled, or if scheduling status is unknown.
Use available filters and search fields to locate the appropriate patient referral. Click the white pen icon to open the patient referral card. Edit, update or change any information as needed then save any updated information by selecting the “Save” button.
Edit from within the appointment card
A user can access a previously created patient referral from within the scheduled appointment card. To do this, first, locate the corresponding appointment within the appointment calendar. Next, click the desired appointment to prompt the “Appointment details” card. Then, you will select the “edit” button to open the appointment edit screen. Below is an example of an appointment card with an available patient referral.
If a patient has previously created referrals which are not linked, they will automatically prompt and display within the appointment card for easy selection. A user is able to select a previously created referral at this time if it should need to be linked to the current appointment. Finally, change and update any referral information as needed. This information is accessible at the bottom of the appointment card. Then click “Save” to update the referral and/or appointment.
Create a Patient Referral from an Appointment
It is possible to create a new patient referral directly from the appointment card if a patient referral does not already exist. This can be done by first selecting “Referred patient” as the patient type (located in the lower left-hand corner of the dialogue page), and then checking the box “Create patient referral” (located in the bottom right-hand corner of the appointment screen). Additional referring information such as organization or veterinarian will need to be selected to complete the referral creation.
If no referral is needed for the appointment, the patient type can be updated to “First opinion case” which will remove the referral selections.
Sending Referral Feedback
During a consultation, consultation records can easily be sent to a referring organization or veterinarian by using the referral feedback communication options.
What are the options to customise the process?
Copying the referrer from a previous consultation
Settings > Department settings > Patient referral > Copy referrer from previous consultation
This setting will enable previous referral information to be suggested at the time of future appointment scheduling and also retain within the patient card for easy future reference.
Enable referral patient tagging
Settings > department settings > patient referral > Enable referral patient tagging
If this setting is enabled, user-specified tags will automatically be created for a referred patient. When a consultation with the referred patient is started or when a referral has been created for the patient at the Patient referrals dashboard.