All you need to know about NHS app messaging
What is happening?
All practices have been given a target of getting 75% of their patients on the NHS app by the end of 2024.
What is NHS app messaging?
Glad you asked.
In December 2022 iPLATO became one of the first to integrate with the NHS app in England, sending messages to patients using the NHS app rather than via SMS.
Right now, messages that go via the NHS include:
This means that you have already been sending messages via the NHS app, for free!
We can even tell you when a patient reads their message. Have a look at our page on Read Receipts.
Any messages that require a reply will be sent via SMS as normal or via the myGP app.
How do I send messages to the NHS app from iPLATO?
- Easy! Just send your messages as normal, your iPLATO system does the hard work for you and will automatically send the message to a patient’s NHS app if they have one.
Does a patient need to do anything in the NHS app to receive messages?
- Yes, only patients who have enabled notifications in the NHS app can receive messages from you this way.
- However, once this is done, all future messages will be sent via the app, keeping everything in one place.
- Not only that, the process is seamless for the patient, once they have logged into the NHS app, they dont have to enter a DOB or authenticate any other way to receive messages.
Which of my patients has the NHS app?
- We can show you who at your practice has downloaded the NHS app, not only that we can also show you who has also turned on their notifications in the NHS app.
- This is important because only the patients who have enabled notifications will be able to receive messages via the NHS app, so you will want to let your patients know this to get the most out of it.
- CLICK HERE to see how to search for your NHS app patients.
How to promote NHS app use at your surgery
The NHS has provided resources for you to use to help get the word out! The following are all from the NHS.
- An overview for your practice on how to use NHS app and messaging.
- Messaging templates to let patients know about the app and what to do.
- Templates and banners to use for your website and social media channels.
- NHS page for patients
- NHS guide for patients to turn on notifications in the NHS app.
Great! What’s next?
- As you know, we have been the leaders in NHS app messaging, and we are not stopping now.
- We plan to release Key Word Reply and Appointment Reminder messaging within the NHS app soon.
What does that mean?
- Well, it means you can send a message to a patient and ask them to reply with a specific word, (like DECLINE on your flu vaccination invites)
- Not only that, but you will also then be able to send your Automated appointment reminders via the NHS app as well.
How will this work?
- Simple, all within the NHS app, the patient won’t leave the app, the option to reply will be right there as a selectable response.
- And even better, you don’t have to change anything, you carry on using iPLATO just as you always have.
- Have a look at the below example to see how it could work.
When is all this happening?
Sooner than you think.
While some are only just now piloting their one-way messaging capabilities, we plan to release Key Word Replies and Appointment Reminders via the NHS app later this year.