Introducing Patient Authentication for Website Forms

Website Forms allow clinics to host Ocean forms on a URL so patients can securely complete self-referrals, new patient intake, prescription renewals, appointment requests, and more. This website form URL can be hosted on a clinic website, or sent to a patient via email. 

What are Patient Authenticated Website Forms?

Ocean can restrict access to a website form to patients with an existing chart in the clinic’s EMR. Ocean does this by adding a Patient Authentication (PA) feature as the initial step. When used with the Inbound Message eForm, patients can also submit files & documents to their healthcare provider.

Key Benefits:

  • Easy for Patients - Patients are not required to create an account or log into a patient portal in order to securely submit information & files
  • EMR-integrated - Notes from accepted submissions can be imported directly into the patient’s chart with a single click
  • Customizable - As with all of Ocean’s patient-facing tools, the Website Form can be customized to suit your clinic’s needs (eg. clinic logo, welcome message, etc.)

How it works for Patients:

  1. Patient navigates to your Website Form.

    • A patient navigates to your clinic’s website and finds your Website Form. This can be hyperlinked as a button (eg. “Contact the Family Health Team), or displayed directly on a webpage (using an iframe). If you choose not to display your Website Form on your clinic website, the URL can be shared directly with your patient using Ocean’s secure patient messaging.
  2. Patient enters information to authenticate.

    • The patient enters their first and last name, date of birth, and health card number into the PA screen and submits.
    • In order to authenticate the patient, Ocean will search the EMR for a matching chart based on this information. If there is a match, the patient can proceed to the next step.
  3. Patient completes form and optionally adds attachments.

    • The patient can now complete the "Inbound Message" eForm. If the patient would like to include an attachment, they can click the +File upload button to attach a file from their device. Ocean will accept attachments with a size limit of 10MB per attachment and up to 50MB total for all attachments. Ocean also has a limitation on certain file types. If a patient uploads a file type that is not supported or that is too large, Ocean will give them the appropriate size or type error message.
  4. Success notification shown.

    • The patient is notified that their submission was successfully submitted and they can exit the session.

To learn how these attachments are then downloaded into your EMR, learn how to download an attachment submitted through a Website Form.

Want to get started? Learn how to set up a Website Form to allow patients to securely send attachments.



Basic Website Forms Management Workflow

  1. Receive a submission from your Website Forms.

    • Once a patient has submitted an Ocean form from a clinic website, the site's clinical administrator will receive an email notification from no-reply@cognisantmd.com, with a link back to the Ocean Portal.
  2. Review the submission.

    • Follow the link to the Ocean Portal and navigate to the eRequests tab.
    • You will find the new submission in the "New" folder.
    • Click on the submission to view its details and confirm that it's a legitimate patient request. If you are a PS Suite, Med Access, OSCAR user, check to see if a matching patient chart exists in the EMR. If not, create a Patient Stub with the following fields: First Name, Last Name, Health Number and Date of Birth.
  3. Accept or Complete the submission.

    • If this is a simple patient inquiry that can be answered with one reply, simply type your response in the "Comments for Referrer and Patient" box (in the Scheduling pane) and mark the request as "Completed".
    • If this is an appointment request, once you've verified that this is a legitimate patient request, accept the submission.
  4. Import the information into your patient's chart.

    • Once you've completed or accepted the request, you'll be presented with the Import window.
PS Suite or Oscar Med Access Accuro Other EMR
  • For PS Suite or OSCAR users, if you have a patient chart with matching demographic data, you should have a quick link on the Ocean Toolbar in your EMR, which will allow you to import a patient's information using the Ocean reference number provided.
  • If your eForms are also configured to collect patient demographic fields, these fields should get automatically updated in the patient's chart when you import their submission.

Note: If this was a simple patient inquiry, once you've marked the request as "Completed" and imported the note into the patient's chart in your EMR, then you are done processing this request (and can skip the rest of the steps outlined below).

  1. Book your patient's appointment (if applicable).

    • An accepted request will be found in the "Pending Booking" folder.
    • If the patient has been booked for their appointment, go back into the eRequests tab of Ocean Portal, find the patient again, enter in their appointment details in the "Scheduling" panel, and then save the request.
  • Note: If your Website form is not an appointment request, simply use the "Completed" button when opening it from the "Pending Booking" folder to move it into the "Completed" subfolder of the "Processed" folder.
  1. Confirm the appointment booking (if applicable).

    • If you have an "Email" field on your Website form, once you've saved the appointment booking, the patient will be sent an email containing their appointment details and an option to confirm their scheduled appointment.
    • The patient will then move into the "Booked Unconfirmed" folder until either they confirm their appointment by clicking the button in the email notification sent to them or you manually mark them as confirmed.
    • Once the patient has confirmed their appointment, they will then move into the "Booked Confirmed" folder of the eRequests tab.
  2. Mark the request as completed.

    • Once the patient's appointment date has passed, you can go back into the eRequests tab of the Ocean Portal to find their submission and mark it as "Completed".
    • This will move the request to the "Completed" subfolder of the "Processed" folder.

Website Form Inboxes

If you have set up Website Forms (i.e. an online web questionnaire that is available to the public via a link on your website), you will be notified when a new submission is completed and the results of this submission will appear in your Website Forms inboxes in the Ocean Portal. Below describes the process in which submissions are received and processed.

Note: Because Website Forms are available to the public, submissions first enter into your Website Forms inbox, rather than directly into the EMR (to make sure any bogus submissions are filtered out before entering into the EMR).

  1. View your submission.

    • Once a new submission is completed, the Clinical Administrator Email (which can be set in the "Site Account" section of the Admin tab) will receive a notification of its completion.
    • From there, you can log in to the Ocean Portal and check your new submission in the "New" inbox of the eRequests tab.
    • Click on the new submission to view its details.

      General panel
      This is where any demographic information provided on your Website form will populate, including the patient's name, address, phone number, email address, etc.
      Notes panel
      This is where you can add any free-text or pre-programmed notes related to the submission (e.g. Contact attempted, patient was seen, etc.).
      Referral Note panel
      This is where the results of the Website form will populate (a.k.a. the "clinical note" associated with the Website form).
      Scheduling panel
      This is where you can record if and/or when you've booked an appointment for this patient (if, for example, your Website form was for patients requesting to book an appointment at your clinic). If the patient has provided their email address, you can also add a comment for the the booking "Comments for Referrer and Patient) and/or attach a file for them to review (using the paperclip icon), as needed.
  2. Manage your submission.

    • Once you've edited the request to your liking, you can either "Accept" or "Decline."
    • This will open up an Import dialog box and move the request into your "Booked Unconfirmed" inbox (or "Pending Booking" inbox if you haven't booked an appointment for them). For more details about how to import requests, please refer to this article.
    • From there, if you've booked an appointment for the patient, you or the patient can confirm their appointment booking (assuming the patient has granted email consent). Once the patient has been seen, you may mark the request as "Completed".
    • Marking a submission as "Completed" will move it to the "Processed" inbox's "Completed" folder, where it will stay for 12 months.

For more details on how long submissions are kept within Ocean, please refer to "How long will my eReferrals be stored in Ocean?".


Importing Website Form Submissions from the Ocean Portal to an EMR

We currently support imports from Website Forms for TELUS PS SuiteMed Access, OSCAR, and QHR Accuro. If you are not using any of these EMRs, many clinics still use Website Forms without an EMR integration, as you also have the option to export submissions to a spreadsheet or as a PDF at any time.

PS Suite or OSCAR Med Access Accuro Other EMR

Website form contains Health Number Field 

  • Navigate to the eForms tab of the Ocean Portal, find the Ocean eForm that you have used for your Website Forms, and open the eForm in the eForm Editor.
  • Ensure that your eForm has a mandatory item that asks for the patient's health number and that the "Populate answer for EMR field" field for that item is set to "hn" (in the Note Formatting tab).
  • Once you've received a request from your website form, check to see if there is an existing patient chart in the EMR. If the patient does not exist, you must manually create a patient stub with the patient's Health Number so the request can be imported. If the patient already exists with a matching health number, the notes will automatically upload into that patient's chart once you click "Accept". 
  • Back in the Ocean Portal, open the eRequests tab and find the request you want to import. It will normally be in the "New" folder.
  • Open the request you want to import and click "Accept".
  • The import window will indicate if the upload was successful or not. If it was not successful, go back into PSS and ensure there is an existing patient chart. 

Website Form Does Not Contain Health Number Field 

  • Back in the Ocean Portal, open the eRequests tab and find the request you want to import. It will normally be in the "New" folder.
  • Open the request you want to import and click "Accept".
  • It will show a (usually 3-digit) patient reference number:
  • On the toolbar in PS Suite or OSCAR, click "Import" and enter this number. The demographic updates will be applied and the note will be imported as a progress note by Ocean.
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