Services, Carers & Supporters, Service User Engagement, Care & Treatment

18 May, 2022

New, improved notifications for appointment information launching

A calendar sits on a desk beside a computer keyboard, with a pencil and post-it notes ready to mark important dates.

St Patrick’s Mental Health Services (SPMHS) is delighted to introduce improvements to how we communicate with our service users about appointments.

From 23 May 2022, we will be enhancing how service users receive appointment information by launching new text, email and Your Portal notifications. The new notifications will come in across all our one-to-one inpatient and Dean Clinic services, including homecare and remote services. The type of notifications service users will receive depends on which service they are attending and whether or not they are registered to our online platform, Your Portal.

We will also be making it possible for service users, if they wish, to nominate up to two people who can receive their one-to-one appointment information. This enables those nominated to support service users to attend their appointments.

These developments are based on feedback from our service users about how we can make information about appointments more clear and efficient. This feedback and engagement with service users has helped to ensure these developments have many benefits. The new notifications make it quicker and easier to find information, receive updates and attend appointments. Being able to choose to include others in receiving appointment information offers reassurance to service users of support in their mental health recovery. Focusing on paperless updates and reducing the number of letters about appointments our service users receive is also more environmentally friendly.

Service users’ care teams are available to answer any questions service users have about the new notifications. Our Service User IT Support (SUITS) team can also provide support to service users attending remote appointments who have any queries or issues around joining their appointments through Microsoft Teams (MS Teams).

Learn more about what types of appointment notifications to expect and how to nominate others to receive appointment information below.

Appointment notifications

Appointment notifications


For service users who are registered to Your Portal…

Your Portal is our online platform which enables service users to document and share their own health-related information and to contribute to their mental health care and treatment plans.

From 23 May 2022, all service users who are registered to the portal will receive their appointment information directly in Your Portal. This applies to inpatient and Dean Clinic appointments, including remote service appointments.

Service users will receive a notification in Your Portal and an automated email from the portal about their appointments.

Portal notifications and automated emails will be sent when:

  • An appointment is booked
  • Details of an appointment are changed by SPMHS staff or the service user
  • The SPMHS staff attending an appointment change
  • An appointment is cancelled by SPMHS staff or the service user.

Where an appointment is taking place remotely, a link to join a videocall on MS Teams will be included in the appointment information in Your Portal. The service user will also receive an automated email on the day of their appointment which includes the link to join the videocall. This ensures the link is easy to find and to use on different devices at the time of the appointment.

Note -  Seven and three day reminders for Dean Clinic appointments will also be sent by text.

To keep communications as simple and clear as possible, other texts, emails or letters about one-to-one appointments will not be sent to the service user.

Service users can easily view all their upcoming appointments at any time in Your Portal. After logging in, they can scroll down the homepage to “Diary” and then click “Appointments”.

For service users who are not registered to Your Portal…

Inpatient and Dean Clinic service users who are not registered to Your Portal will receive new text and email notifications of their one-to-one appointments.

From 23 May, service users will receive texts to:

  • confirm appointment bookings, including details of the date, time and delivery method of the appointment and which member(s) of the SPMHS team will be attending.
  • share updates if a staff member or service user changes, reschedules or cancels an appointment
  • inform the service user if a staff member attending the appointment changes.

When an appointment is taking place remotely by videocall, service users will also receive an email on the day of their appointment with the link to join the MS Teams videocall.

In addition, Dean Clinic service users will receive reminder texts both seven days and three days ahead of their appointments.

For mental health assessments…

When someone is referred to our services, they may take part in a Prompt Assessment of Needs (PAON) with a mental health nurse or a Dean Clinic Mental Health Assessment. Text confirmations or reminders of these assessments will be sent in advance. If an assessment is taking place by videocall, an email with the link to join the videocall will be sent on the day. In addition, some documents may be sent by post; this will depend on the programme or service the person is being referred to.

For inpatient and day patient clinical programmes…

Service users who are attending inpatient and day patient clinical programmes will receive appointment information in Your Portal and email notifications from their care team with the programme timetables and MS Teams links where required. Text messages in relation to programme group appointment information will not be sent.

Shared appointment information

Shared appointment information

From 23 May 2022, we are introducing a new option for service users to nominate up to two people who can receive their appointment information by text. This is a completely optional process. It came about through feedback from service users that many find it helpful to enable others to help them attend appointments.

Any service user who would like to take up this option can choose up to two people from their support network, such as a partner, parent, carer or supporter. To nominate their contacts, the service user can get in touch with any member of their care team to have this information recorded in their electronic healthcare record.

The nominated contacts will receive:

  • Text messages to confirm when an appointment is booked
  • Text messages which share details of any changes to appointments
  • An email on the day of videocall appointments with the link to join.

If, at a later point, service users wish to remove a nominated person from their appointment information, they can do so by contacting any member of their care team to update their electronic health record.



These new developments have been built out with service user privacy and security in mind.

When a service user is attending an appointment, their medical information is confidential; this does not change when a service user is attending appointments remotely rather than in a clinical setting. For service users attending appointments remotely, it is important they are alone and not overheard. We ask that they ensure they are able to speak freely.

The service user’s multidisciplinary team (MDT) will not share their information, unless there is a concern reported about their safety or the safety of others. It is routine practice to be asked questions about safety and relationships.

We advise service users to share information regarding their treatments and appointments only with those they feel comfortable with.



Our SUITS team is on hand to help service users who need support accessing their remote appointments. SUITS can also offer assistance in registering for or using Your Portal.

To contact SUITS, call 01 249 3629, email, or use our online SUITS contact form. SUITS is available from Monday to Friday, between 9am and 5pm. You can leave a voicemail, email or contact form outside these hours.