If you're looking to make some changes to your Appointment Book layout, then this article is the place for you.
Before you begin
The Appointment Preferences can be accessed via Appts > Appt Preferences or by clicking the Appointment Preferences icon at the left of your Appointment Book.
Before you make any changes to your Appointment Preferences, please be aware that changes made to the Main tab will apply to every user. For this reason, it is best to consult with your team and administrator before making any changes here. Some features in the Appointment Preferences can be adjusted per user, however this is done through User Preferences
Start and End Time: The Start Time and End Time are the earliest and latest times displayed in your appointment book for all doctors. This is a global setting and cannot be adjusted for individual doctors. Time must be entered in 24 hour format i.e. 06:30PM = 1830.
Interval: Interval is the length of time for a normal appointment slot. If each of the providers at your practice have different appointment lengths, these should be set from their User Preferences.
First Day of Week: The first day that will display on the calendar in the Appointment Book.
Calendar Sync Name: Calendar Sync Name is used for syncing with iCal/Outlook. By default this will be GenieSync. For more information, see Synchronising With Outlook/iCal.
Delete Patient Appointments:
Delete Patient Appointments After XX days and Delete Non Patient Appointments After XX days will tell Genie how often you want it to automatically clear out old appointments. Please note: This setting should be adjusted with extreme caution. Once appointments have been cleared in this way it is not possible to restore them to your live data.
Setting these preferences to 9999 will essentially mean that appointments are never cleared. For more information on this preference, please refer to our Knowledgebase article
Refresh Screen Every XX seconds: Instructs Genie to display changes which may have been made on another computer on the network at this specified interval. This setting is not relevant for single users. The recommended refresh setting is 60 seconds; the minimum allowed setting is 30 seconds.
Note: You can force a screen refresh at any time by clicking on the TODAY button above the calendar in the Appointment Book.
Days Shown in Dates View: Allows you to specify the number of days you would like displayed when viewing the appointment book in date view (see Appointment Views). This would usually be the number of days in your working week. The larger this value is, the slower your Appointment Book may be as Genie will be required to render many appointments at once.
Show Theatre List Indicator: Allows you to manually indicate the status of the theatre list for an individual provider on a particular day. Ticking the checkbox in the appointment book will allow you to cycle between: No List Today, Slots Available and List Full.
Insert Chart No. in Appt Cell: Will insert the patient's chart number next to their name in the Appointment field of the appointment book when an appointment is made. These notes are visible when in the single provider view.
Insert DOB/Referral Details/Patient Memo in Notes: Will insert the patient's DOB/Referral Details/Patient Memo into the Notes field of the appointment book when an appointment is made. These notes are visible when in the single provider view. Ticking or unticking these options will only affect appointments added into the Appointment Book in the future. It will not affect existing appointments.
Preferred Patient Phone No.: Dictates the phone number that will display by default in the Phone column of the Appointment Book when in the single provider view.
Calculate Waiting Times from: Allows you to select if you want patient waiting times to be calculated based on their Appointment Time, their Arrival Time or Never. When you mark a patient as "In Waiting Room", Genie will calculate the time it takes until the patient's Clinical window is opened. In the case that the waiting time is calculated based on their appointment time, if the patient is put into the waiting room and their Clinical window is opened before their appointment time, the waiting time will appear in the Appointment Book as a negative number.
Note: If you open the Clinical Window prior to marking the patient as "In Waiting Room", the waiting time will be calculated from the appointment time, even if your preferences indicate it should be calculated from the arrival time.
Check for Double Appointments: Alerts you if there is a conflict when moving appointments in the appointment book. If you move an appointment to a time that already has an appointment booked, a message will appear giving you the option to double-book the time slot or Cancel the creation of the appointment.
Check for Future Appointments: Will check to see if the patient has any appointments booked in the future from either the Current Date, or from the Date of the New Appointment you are making. If Genie detects a future appointment, a message will appear giving you the option to Delete Next Appt & Delete Type, Delete Next Appt & Keep Type, or Keep Next Appt.
Check for Cancellations When Deleting: Will alert you if there are patients waiting for a cancellation when you delete a patient from the appointment book. For more information on how to use this feature, see Cancellation List.
These options are specifically for practices who are using an online appointment booking service. Please contact your nominated Online Appointment provider regarding these options.
Require user to login again after X minutes of inactivity on this machine: Will present users with the login window after a specified period of inactivity. Note: The minimum time you can set is 5 minutes. Users will be required to select their username and enter their password to continue using Genie. In order for this feature to work, either the Appointment Book or the Patients list must be left open. If the time is left as 0 minutes, this feature will be disabled.
Open to View: Allows you to select which of the four views to open the Appointment Book to by default: Providers, Dates, Rooms and List. You can switch between these views at any time by clicking on the appropriate view button from the Appointment Book.
Track Current Time: Gives you the option to track the current time in the Appointment Book by highlighting the current time or displaying a clock icon. Genie does not store the time within the program, it gathers this from the regional settings on the Server computer. If your time within Genie is incorrect, you should check these settings on your server computer.
Track Current Appt Row: Will highlight the time column for the appointment cell that you have selected in the Appointment Book.
Hide Calendar: Will change the appointment view between normal view and hide calendar mode. In normal view, the calendar and buttons are displayed on the left-hand side of the screen. In hide calendar mode, the calendar is not displayed and the buttons appear at the top of the screen. This can also be changed by clicking on the long date with the red background below the TODAY button (i.e. Thu, 28 Aug 2014) in the Appointment Book.Show Appt Details on Mouseover: Allows you to view any notes that you have chosen to be inserted into a patient's appointment (see The Main Tab) by hovering over their name. This is particularly useful for double booked appointments. This feature can cause slowness in the Appointment Book, so if you are experiencing slowness it is recommended that you untick this preference.
Show Schedule Type Names: Allows you to see the appointment type name over the top of the appointment type colour. If this option is not selected, you will only see the appointment type colour. You must have the Show Appointment Schedule button turned on in the Appointment Book for this feature to work.
Keep Time Column In View: Allows the time column to remain in view when you are scrolling across or down the Appointment Book. This is useful in practices that may have several providers in the Appointment Book.
Use Advanced Rendering: Will improve the general appearance of selected appointments. Bear in mind however, this can compromise the speed of the Appointment Book if you are using hardware that doesn't meet Genie's hardware requirements.
Font, Font Size, or Row Height: Allows you to change the font and row appearance within the Appointment Book. These are user specific preferences and will not affect other users. In general, the easiest-to-read onscreen font for Macintosh is 'Geneva', and for Windows 'Arial'.
Modify Columns: Allows you to specify which columns are displayed, which columns you would like to print (see Printing Appointment Book), the order of the columns, and the column width while in the single provider view of the Appointment Book. You can also access the Modify Columns window from the single provider view in the appointment book by right clicking on the column names and selecting Modify Appointment Columns. In order for this button to be enabled, you must have the Appointment Book opened to a single provider page before opening the Appointment Preferences.
Advanced: Allows you to customise the colour and appearance of the Appointment Book to suit your personal preference.
Background Colours tab allows you to change the colour of the:
Appointment Book: The default patient appointment background colour
Header Areas: The provider headers, column names and time column background colour
Selecting area: The colour that will appear when selecting multiple cells
Click on the box to select the colour you would like to use. You can further customise the selected colour by either typing a value in the field or moving the slide bars for Red, Green or Blue.
The Border Lines tab allows you to change the colour and thickness of:
Grid Lines: The Appointment Book grid lines
Appointment: The border line surrounding an appointment
Selecting Area: The border line surrounding an appointment
Selected Cell: The border line of the selected cells
Adjust the thickness of the lines by typing a value in the field or moving the slide bar below the relevant box. Click on the box to select the colour you would like to use. You can further customise the selected colour by either typing a value in the field or moving the slide bars for Red, Green or Blue.
Restore Defaults: Allows you to restore the colours and grid lines to their default settings.
Don't Print Empty Appointments: Instructs Genie to print only appointments cells that have patient appointments in them. Some practices do not select this option as they prefer to see the empty slots on the printed appointment sheet.
Percent reduction when printing: Gives you the choice on how you would like your Appointment Book reduced when printed: Fit to Single Page or Custom. The Fit to Single Page option will automatically resize the Appointment Book so that it can fit onto one page. The Custom option allows you to manually enter in a percentage value to reduce the Appointment Book, which may still require multiple pages.
Note: What is printed is dependent on the number of columns you have selected to print in the Modify Columns window as well as the column widths. You should experiment with the reduction options and Modify Column settings so that the Appointment Book prints the way that you want it to appear.
Column Order: Defines which order providers' names appear in the Appointment Book. Changes made to the column order are user specific so it will not affect other users. To rearrange the order of providers, click and drag the names in the list and put them in the order you want. The top-most name will appear as the left-most column in the Appointment Book. You can remove a provider from your Appointment Book by highlighting the provider and clicking on the Delete button. To add a provider column into the Appointment Book, click on the Add New Record button, select the relevant provider from the list and click the Select button.
Note: Only users that have been marked as "Show me in the Appointment Book" in their User Preferences window, or "In Appts" in the All User Preferences window will be displayed in this list to add to the Appointment Book.
Rooms: Rooms in Genie can relate to a Hospital or Day Surgery where the surgeon operates. Rooms can be selected when creating a procedure record for a patient.
Alternatively, rooms in Genie can be used as a triage system allowing you to know which room a patient is waiting in to see the doctor. To rearrange the order of rooms, click and drag the room names in the list and put them in the order you require them.
To add a room, click on the Add a New Record button, enter the relevant details for the room and click Save.
To delete a Room, highlight the relevant room and click the Delete button.
The Room drop-down menu at the top of the Appointment Book allows you to assign a patient to a specific room.
You can assign a patient to a room by selecting their name from the Appointment Book, clicking on the Room drop-down menu and selecting the appropriate room.
The Room column in the Appointment Book allows you to quickly see which room a patient has been assigned to.
Slowness in Appointment Book
If Genie feels sluggish when navigating through the Appointment Book, you may have too many appointment records in your database. When a day is selected, Genie sorts through every appointment to find those records for that day, so if there are a large number of appointments in your database, it can take Genie a while to get through them.
The best way to fix this is by setting Genie to delete old appointments. You can do this using the following fields in the Main tab of your Appointment Preferences:
We recommend using the above settings – these will delete patient appointments more than two years old, and non-patient appointments after six months.
Important Note: Once appointments are deleted using this function they cannot be brought back into your live data. For this reason this setting must be changed with extreme caution.
Note: This only deletes the appointment in your Appointment Book. Genie will never delete your consults or billing records. Once these appointments are deleted they cannot be returned to your live data.
If your older appointments are missing, your preferences may have been set to delete patient and/or non-patient appointments sooner than you’d like.
Once appointments have been deleted, they are removed from your database - the only way to view them again would be to restore a backup. However, you can prevent this from happening again by modifying the fields shown above to reflect an appropriate number of days. Setting these fields to ‘9999’ will stop Genie from automatically deleting any appointments.
Appointment Book Not Refreshing
If you notice your Appointment Book is not reflecting changes made throughout the day, check the value entered in Refresh screen every X seconds in the Main tab of your Appointment Preferences. The minimum value you can set this to is thirty seconds.
Incorrect Current Time Shown in Appointment Book
If the current time tracker is incorrect, this usually means at least one of the computers in your practice is on the wrong time. This is commonly caused by a computer that has incorrectly switched or not switched to Daylight Savings Time.
To fix this, check the time shown on all computers in your practice, including the server. If a computer is showing the wrong time, follow the steps in our article on Daylight Saving Time to correct it. If the time is still wrong in the Appointment Book after doing this, restart every computer in the practice, including the server.
If the issue persists, go to File > Practice Preferences, double click on each record in turn and check the field My server is hosted in a time zone X hours ahead is set correctly for your practice.