1. Set Up Patient Messages Senders with Ocean Accounts

    Any individual that requires access to Ocean must have a free Ocean user account.

     

    Please refer to the article Adding a New User to Your Site.
  2. Enabling a Provider License for Patient Messages & Reminders

    Enable your patient messaging license in Ocean. If you would like to share this license with an admin/MOA, they must also have an Ocean user account and you must assign that user as your Primary Delegate.

    Please refer to the article Enabling a Provider License for Patient Messages & Reminders.
  3. Link User EMR Accounts to Ocean User Accounts

    Ocean users need to link their EMR and Ocean user accounts in order to enable alerts and track activity.


    Ocean administrators should provide the following instructions to all of their Ocean users in order to link their Ocean user account with their EMR user account. This step should only take a few minutes and must be completed by each individual user from the EMR.

    1. Open the Patient Messages window from a "dummy" patient chart.

    PS Suite Med Access Accuro OSCAR
    • Select "Email Patient" from the Ocean custom form or toolbar.
    1. Log in to Ocean to link your EMR and Ocean accounts.

      • Initiating an email will open the Patient Messages window in an internet browser.
      •  
      • At the top of the Patient Messages editor, you will see a banner that says: "Hello [your EMR username]. Click here to link to your Ocean account." Click this banner and sign in to Ocean with your Ocean user name and password.
      •  
      • Your EMR username will now be linked to your Ocean user account (and an accompanying Patient Messages licence, if applicable).
  4. Adding an Email to Receive Patient Message Notifications

    Customize where email notifications should be sent when a patient has viewed a secure message and/or completed a form.

    • By default, alerts are sent to the email address associated with the message sender’s Ocean user account.
    • If you would like to change the default email or add additional emails to receive alerts, you can update the "Clinical Delegate Emails" by following the instructions below.
    1. Navigate to the My Account page

      • The My Account page can be accessed by clicking your name at the top right-hand corner of the Ocean Portal. 
    1. Update the Clinical Delegate Email field

      • Within your User Settings, locate the Clinical Delegate Emails field. Enter the email addresses that should receive notifications of patient responses and/or form completions. You can list multiple email addresses by separating each address using a comma.
      • After you are finished your updates, ensure you press Save Changes in the bottom right corner of the page.
  5. Review Your Default Templates & Template Settings

    Review Ocean's pre-made templates that are used with Patient Messaging or Patient Reminders, allowing you to get started right away.

    Your Ocean site includes pre-made templates, allowing you to get started right away with your Patient Messaging & Reminders products. These default templates include information and wording that patients will see when they receive a secure message or reminder from your clinic.

    You can choose to use these templates as they appear by default, or you can use them as a content guide that can be customized to suit your clinic's needs.

    1. Open the Template Manager within the Ocean Portal.

      • In the top left corner of the Ocean Portal, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
    2. Review your list of templates.

      • The Template Manager shows your Ocean site's templates that can be used with Patient Messaging & Reminders.
      • You will find two pre-made templates ("Default - Secure Message" and "Default - Appointment Reminder") that you can use right away - one for Patient Messaging, and one for automatic Patient Reminders.
      • Press "Edit" next to one of the default templates to open the Template Editor.
    3. Review the default template content.

      • The Template Editor displays each different component of your template, with a description of the functionality.
      • The contents of the pre-made templates can be used immediately, or you can use it as a content guideline for further customization.
      • Once you are finished reviewing the contents, press the "Save" or "Cancel" button at the bottom of the page to return to the main Template Manager area.
    4. Review your global template settings.

      • Press "Settings" in the top right corner to review settings that apply to all of your templates.
      Email Friendly Name and From Address
      Shows how messages and reminders will appear when received by patients in their email inbox.
      Lock email body contents for non-admins
      Set this to 'Yes' if you would like to prevent non-admin Ocean users from editing the email body when sending a secure message to a patient.
      Overdue Notifications
      Select your preferred behaviour for alerts of overdue patient responses and eForm completions.
  6. Customize Your Templates (Optional)

    The Template Manager will allow you create and save templates, allowing you to have a collection of standard messages (with accompanying secure messages and/or forms) to send to patients through one off Patient Messages or through Reminders.

    Customized templates are very useful if you often send the same specific message and/or a set of forms to patients. Additionally, a customized template is essential if you are using Patient Reminders.

    Using the Template Manager, you're able to create a brand new templates from scratch, modify existing templates, or even duplicate a template to make a similar yet slightly different version.

    Creating a brand new template
    • To create a brand new template, log in to the Ocean Portal.
    • In the top left corner, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
    • Press the "Add Template" button. This will bring you into the Template Editor.
    • Certain fields are pre-populated with standard wording which you can choose to make slight modifications to, or even fully replace with your own content.
    • Once you are happy with the contents of your template, press "Save" at the bottom of the page to save your template.
    • Alternatively, you can press "Save & Make Site Default" if you would like this template to appear automatically each time you send a patient message.
    • Tip: You can easily determine your site's default template from the Template Manager by looking for the template tagged with "Site Default".
    Customizing an existing template
    • To customize an existing template, log in to the Ocean Portal.
    • In the top left corner, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
    • The Template Manager displays all of your existing templates. To customize an existing template, press the "Edit" button next to it.
    • In the Template Editor, you're able to see the existing content of your template and modify it to your liking.
    • Once you have finished making your changes, press the "Save" button at the bottom of the page.
    Duplicating a template

    If you're looking to create a catalog of templates for use at your clinic, the Duplicate functionality is helpful to efficiently build out your templates and make small changes to the contents.

    • To duplicate a template, log in to the Ocean Portal.
    • In the top left corner, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
    • From the Template Manager, press the "Duplicate" button next to the template that you would like to duplicate.
    • You will be launched into the Template Editor which is automatically populated with the contents of the template you chose to duplicate.
    • The template is automatically named "Copy of [original template name]". You can modify the name to reflect the changes you are making to the template contents.
    • Once you are finished modifying the contents of your template, press the "Save" or "Save & Make Site Default" button at the bottom of the page to save your template.

    Template Settings

    Template Name

    • The template name is for you to easily recognize the contents of the template. It is never visible to patients, so you can use it to describe the purpose of the template for yourself and other users on your Ocean site.

    Subject Line

    • The customizable subject line is what will appear in patients' email inbox when they receive a secure message or reminder using this template.

    Salutation

    • The saluation is the opening line of the email body.
    • Tip: The @ptPreferredOrFirstName keyword will automatically populate the patient's name as it appears in your EMR, providing an automatically customized salutation for your patients.

    Email Body

    • The email body allows you to customize the message that the patient will see in their email inbox.
    • The “[weblink]” keyword indicates where in your email a hyperlink will automatically appear for the patient to click on to access any secure content.
    • Depending on the secure content being sent to the patient, the hyperlink will appear as either: “View Secure Message”, “Complete Questionnaire” or “View Secure Message and Complete Questionnaire”.
    • Note: Content included in the email body will not be recorded into the patient's chart.

    Secure Message

    • Choose if you would like to include a secure message in this template. A receipt of the secure message will be recorded in the patient’s EMR chart with a date and time stamp.
    • Secure messages are accessed by patients when they click on the hyperlink in the email body.
    Secure Message Content
    You can type any information into this text box that you would like to have saved as the secure message for this template. The contents of the secure message will be recorded in the patient's chart.
    Allow patient to reply

    When set to 'Yes', this option will allow the patient to provide a one-time typed response to the message. Patient responses can be found within their chart in your EMR, and you will receive an email notification alerting you that they have responded.

    Note that this functionality is not available when using Group Messages with Ocean.

    Notify the sender when the patient has acknowledged the secure message
    When set to 'Yes', a notification will be sent to the sender’s email or the clinical delegate emails when the patient has acknolwedged the secure message.

    eForms

    • Choose if you would like to add an eForm(s) to this template.
    Add eForm
    This button will open a window to search for and select an Ocean eForm. Once a form is added, it will be shown below the button.
    You can preview or remove the eForm by using the buttons to the right of its name.
    If you are adding multiple eForms, the "" arrow symbol to the left allows you to modify the sequence in which patients complete the eForms.
    Notify sender when patient has completed their forms
    When set to 'Yes', an email notification will be sent to the sender’s email or clinical delegate emails when the patient completes all of their eForms.

    Advanced Settings

    • This area allows you to customize advanced settings including the expiration time for the hyperlink in the email body, the identity verification requirements, a redirect URL, and an overdue response timeframe.

     

    Expiration Date
    This field determines the period of time during which the patient can access a secure message, attachment, or Ocean forms by clicking on the hyperlink in the email.
    If an Ocean form is opened, completed and submitted by the patient, it cannot be accessed again. However, secure messages and attachments remain available until the patient selects the checkbox saying, “I do not need to view this message again” or the link expires.
    Identity Verification
    Decide how patients can verify their identity to access secure messages and/or forms. By default, Ocean uses birth date as the required validation method. However, you can change this to an access password (given to the patient beforehand), the patient's health card number or EMR number.
    Redirect URL
    This will allow you to redirect the patient to the URL of your choice once they've completed an online questionnaire (i.e. when they click the "Finish" button), instead of displaying Ocean's default message. Click here for guidance on using redirects.
    Overdue Notification
    Receive an email notification alerting you that the patient has not yet accessed their secure message by entering the number of days here.
  7. Set the Email Sender Name Patients Will Receive a Message From

    By default, Patient Messages will appear to be sent by "Ocean by CognisantMD", which can be confusing for patients.

      • By default, emails sent to patients from Ocean on your behalf use the sender name "Ocean by CognisantMD".
      • However, this can be easily customized from the Ocean Portal. Click "Menu" in the top left corner and select "Admin". From the Admin Settings page, click Site Account and update the “Email Friendly Name” field.
      • Now, when a patient receives an email from your clinic, the sender name will reflect what you input in this field.
      •  
      •  
      •  

    Edit the email address Patient Messages will be sent from (optional):

    • Clinics that want to customize their “From” email address are required to have their own domain name and the ability to modify DNS records with the domain name registrar. Making this change requires that an SPF record is added, indicating that the Ocean email servers are permitted to send emails on your domain's behalf. Learn how to do this in the following guide: Email Patients Using Your Own Email Address


Link User EMR Accounts to Ocean User Accounts

Ocean users need to link their EMR and Ocean user accounts in order to enable alerts and track activity.


Ocean administrators should provide the following instructions to all of their Ocean users in order to link their Ocean user account with their EMR user account. This step should only take a few minutes and must be completed by each individual user from the EMR.

  1. Open the Patient Messages window from a "dummy" patient chart.

PS Suite Med Access Accuro OSCAR
  • Select "Email Patient" from the Ocean custom form or toolbar.
  1. Log in to Ocean to link your EMR and Ocean accounts.

    • Initiating an email will open the Patient Messages window in an internet browser.
    •  
    • At the top of the Patient Messages editor, you will see a banner that says: "Hello [your EMR username]. Click here to link to your Ocean account." Click this banner and sign in to Ocean with your Ocean user name and password.
    •  
    • Your EMR username will now be linked to your Ocean user account (and an accompanying Patient Messages licence, if applicable).

Adding an Email to Receive Patient Message Notifications

Customize where email notifications should be sent when a patient has viewed a secure message and/or completed a form.

  • By default, alerts are sent to the email address associated with the message sender’s Ocean user account.
  • If you would like to change the default email or add additional emails to receive alerts, you can update the "Clinical Delegate Emails" by following the instructions below.
  1. Navigate to the My Account page

    • The My Account page can be accessed by clicking your name at the top right-hand corner of the Ocean Portal. 
  1. Update the Clinical Delegate Email field

    • Within your User Settings, locate the Clinical Delegate Emails field. Enter the email addresses that should receive notifications of patient responses and/or form completions. You can list multiple email addresses by separating each address using a comma.
    • After you are finished your updates, ensure you press Save Changes in the bottom right corner of the page.

Review Your Default Templates & Template Settings

Review Ocean's pre-made templates that are used with Patient Messaging or Patient Reminders, allowing you to get started right away.

Your Ocean site includes pre-made templates, allowing you to get started right away with your Patient Messaging & Reminders products. These default templates include information and wording that patients will see when they receive a secure message or reminder from your clinic.

You can choose to use these templates as they appear by default, or you can use them as a content guide that can be customized to suit your clinic's needs.

  1. Open the Template Manager within the Ocean Portal.

    • In the top left corner of the Ocean Portal, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
  2. Review your list of templates.

    • The Template Manager shows your Ocean site's templates that can be used with Patient Messaging & Reminders.
    • You will find two pre-made templates ("Default - Secure Message" and "Default - Appointment Reminder") that you can use right away - one for Patient Messaging, and one for automatic Patient Reminders.
    • Press "Edit" next to one of the default templates to open the Template Editor.
  3. Review the default template content.

    • The Template Editor displays each different component of your template, with a description of the functionality.
    • The contents of the pre-made templates can be used immediately, or you can use it as a content guideline for further customization.
    • Once you are finished reviewing the contents, press the "Save" or "Cancel" button at the bottom of the page to return to the main Template Manager area.
  4. Review your global template settings.

    • Press "Settings" in the top right corner to review settings that apply to all of your templates.
    Email Friendly Name and From Address
    Shows how messages and reminders will appear when received by patients in their email inbox.
    Lock email body contents for non-admins
    Set this to 'Yes' if you would like to prevent non-admin Ocean users from editing the email body when sending a secure message to a patient.
    Overdue Notifications
    Select your preferred behaviour for alerts of overdue patient responses and eForm completions.

Customize Your Templates (Optional)

The Template Manager will allow you create and save templates, allowing you to have a collection of standard messages (with accompanying secure messages and/or forms) to send to patients through one off Patient Messages or through Reminders.

Customized templates are very useful if you often send the same specific message and/or a set of forms to patients. Additionally, a customized template is essential if you are using Patient Reminders.

Using the Template Manager, you're able to create a brand new templates from scratch, modify existing templates, or even duplicate a template to make a similar yet slightly different version.

Creating a brand new template
  • To create a brand new template, log in to the Ocean Portal.
  • In the top left corner, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
  • Press the "Add Template" button. This will bring you into the Template Editor.
  • Certain fields are pre-populated with standard wording which you can choose to make slight modifications to, or even fully replace with your own content.
  • Once you are happy with the contents of your template, press "Save" at the bottom of the page to save your template.
  • Alternatively, you can press "Save & Make Site Default" if you would like this template to appear automatically each time you send a patient message.
  • Tip: You can easily determine your site's default template from the Template Manager by looking for the template tagged with "Site Default".
Customizing an existing template
  • To customize an existing template, log in to the Ocean Portal.
  • In the top left corner, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
  • The Template Manager displays all of your existing templates. To customize an existing template, press the "Edit" button next to it.
  • In the Template Editor, you're able to see the existing content of your template and modify it to your liking.
  • Once you have finished making your changes, press the "Save" button at the bottom of the page.
Duplicating a template

If you're looking to create a catalog of templates for use at your clinic, the Duplicate functionality is helpful to efficiently build out your templates and make small changes to the contents.

  • To duplicate a template, log in to the Ocean Portal.
  • In the top left corner, select "Menu" and click "Templates". This brings you to the Template Manager.
  • From the Template Manager, press the "Duplicate" button next to the template that you would like to duplicate.
  • You will be launched into the Template Editor which is automatically populated with the contents of the template you chose to duplicate.
  • The template is automatically named "Copy of [original template name]". You can modify the name to reflect the changes you are making to the template contents.
  • Once you are finished modifying the contents of your template, press the "Save" or "Save & Make Site Default" button at the bottom of the page to save your template.

Template Settings

Template Name

  • The template name is for you to easily recognize the contents of the template. It is never visible to patients, so you can use it to describe the purpose of the template for yourself and other users on your Ocean site.

Subject Line

  • The customizable subject line is what will appear in patients' email inbox when they receive a secure message or reminder using this template.

Salutation

  • The saluation is the opening line of the email body.
  • Tip: The @ptPreferredOrFirstName keyword will automatically populate the patient's name as it appears in your EMR, providing an automatically customized salutation for your patients.

Email Body

  • The email body allows you to customize the message that the patient will see in their email inbox.
  • The “[weblink]” keyword indicates where in your email a hyperlink will automatically appear for the patient to click on to access any secure content.
  • Depending on the secure content being sent to the patient, the hyperlink will appear as either: “View Secure Message”, “Complete Questionnaire” or “View Secure Message and Complete Questionnaire”.
  • Note: Content included in the email body will not be recorded into the patient's chart.

Secure Message

  • Choose if you would like to include a secure message in this template. A receipt of the secure message will be recorded in the patient’s EMR chart with a date and time stamp.
  • Secure messages are accessed by patients when they click on the hyperlink in the email body.
Secure Message Content
You can type any information into this text box that you would like to have saved as the secure message for this template. The contents of the secure message will be recorded in the patient's chart.
Allow patient to reply

When set to 'Yes', this option will allow the patient to provide a one-time typed response to the message. Patient responses can be found within their chart in your EMR, and you will receive an email notification alerting you that they have responded.

Note that this functionality is not available when using Group Messages with Ocean.

Notify the sender when the patient has acknowledged the secure message
When set to 'Yes', a notification will be sent to the sender’s email or the clinical delegate emails when the patient has acknolwedged the secure message.

eForms

  • Choose if you would like to add an eForm(s) to this template.
Add eForm
This button will open a window to search for and select an Ocean eForm. Once a form is added, it will be shown below the button.
You can preview or remove the eForm by using the buttons to the right of its name.
If you are adding multiple eForms, the "" arrow symbol to the left allows you to modify the sequence in which patients complete the eForms.
Notify sender when patient has completed their forms
When set to 'Yes', an email notification will be sent to the sender’s email or clinical delegate emails when the patient completes all of their eForms.

Advanced Settings

  • This area allows you to customize advanced settings including the expiration time for the hyperlink in the email body, the identity verification requirements, a redirect URL, and an overdue response timeframe.

 

Expiration Date
This field determines the period of time during which the patient can access a secure message, attachment, or Ocean forms by clicking on the hyperlink in the email.
If an Ocean form is opened, completed and submitted by the patient, it cannot be accessed again. However, secure messages and attachments remain available until the patient selects the checkbox saying, “I do not need to view this message again” or the link expires.
Identity Verification
Decide how patients can verify their identity to access secure messages and/or forms. By default, Ocean uses birth date as the required validation method. However, you can change this to an access password (given to the patient beforehand), the patient's health card number or EMR number.
Redirect URL
This will allow you to redirect the patient to the URL of your choice once they've completed an online questionnaire (i.e. when they click the "Finish" button), instead of displaying Ocean's default message. Click here for guidance on using redirects.
Overdue Notification
Receive an email notification alerting you that the patient has not yet accessed their secure message by entering the number of days here.

Set the Email Sender Name Patients Will Receive a Message From

By default, Patient Messages will appear to be sent by "Ocean by CognisantMD", which can be confusing for patients.

    • By default, emails sent to patients from Ocean on your behalf use the sender name "Ocean by CognisantMD".
    • However, this can be easily customized from the Ocean Portal. Click "Menu" in the top left corner and select "Admin". From the Admin Settings page, click Site Account and update the “Email Friendly Name” field.
    • Now, when a patient receives an email from your clinic, the sender name will reflect what you input in this field.
    •  
    •  
    •  

Edit the email address Patient Messages will be sent from (optional):

  • Clinics that want to customize their “From” email address are required to have their own domain name and the ability to modify DNS records with the domain name registrar. Making this change requires that an SPF record is added, indicating that the Ocean email servers are permitted to send emails on your domain's behalf. Learn how to do this in the following guide: Email Patients Using Your Own Email Address