Patient Group Messages with Ocean

Ocean allows you to bulk upload a list of patients from a file to assist with performing population-based interventions or patient group messages. A list of patients can be uploaded with a user-specified "Cohort ID", which you can use to send batches of online questionnaires or secure messages.

Note: By default, group messages can be sent to groups with a maximum size of 100 patients. Configuring a custom 'From' address increases this limit to 1000 patients. For more information on how to configure a custom 'From' address, see here: Email Using Your Own Address

Below is a step-by-step guide outlines how to send Patient Group Messages using Ocean.

Download PDF Guide to Sending Patient Group Messages from Ocean

  1. Create your patient list file.

    • Within your EMR, you will need to export a list of patients, including their basic demographic information in a Microsoft Excel or a .csv text file.
    • The means by which you obtain this list of patients varies depending on which EMR you use, but it usually involves the execution and export of a search report in the system.
    • Many EMRs let you export a list of patients with upcoming appointments, which is particularly useful for using Ocean to send pre-visit questionnaires or reminders. However, as long as you can create a list of patients with their basic demographic fields in Microsoft Excel or as a tab-delimited or .csv text file, you should be able to make it into a format that Ocean accepts.
    • To learn how to obtain a properly formatted file that Ocean accepts, please refer to this article.
  2. Upload and name your patient list file.

    • In the Ocean Portal, under the Patients tab, select "Upload Patients from File" from the Actions menu at the bottom left.
    • Search for the file that you created in Step 1.
    • Select the appropriate file "Importer" from the dropdown menu (e.g. standard, PSS or Accuro).
    • Give the file a name next to "Assign Cohort ID".
    • If appropriate, you can also add any eForms to be included in the email under "Queue eForms for uploaded patients".
  3. Send your patient group message.

    • To send a patient group message, select "Email Cohort" from the Actions menu at the bottom left-hand corner of the Patients tab.
    • Select your group using the "Select Cohort" dropdown menu.
    • Select the template that you wish to send from the Templates menu at the top right-hand corner of the dialogue box. (Learn how to set up your online message templates in this article.
    • Select "Send Invitations" to send your emails.
    • Note: If you wish to edit your templates, you must do so by opening the email window for a single patient from within the Patients tab.
  4. View your patient group message transaction logs.

    • For audit or tracking purposes, you may want to download a record of all the batch emails that have been sent to your various patient cohorts. To do this, navigate to the Admin tab of the Ocean Portal.
    • Under "Export Batch Email Transaction Logs", select the date range that you want to see in your exported file. To see all group message transactions, leave these date fields blank.
    • If you'd only like to see the report for a specific group, enter the Cohort ID in the field below the date range. If you'd like to view all of your cohorts, leave this field blank.
    • Click "Export" and your log will download as a .csv file, which can then be opened in Microsoft Excel.
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