The conference is a convergence of professionals working across the spectrum of the suicide prevention industry, from those operating crisis centers and other direct care services, to professionals working in academic settings conducting suicide prevention research, advocates focused on prevention, education and awareness, and those with lived experience.
So we can continue to stay ahead of the topics that most impact iCarol’s customers and continue to support the work of crisis centers, Aaron will join a number of networking and information events. This includes the Lines for Life crisis center tour, and receptions and networking meetings for 988 centers.
Having supported crisis centers since the earliest days of the Lifeline network, and serving a large portion of the network that are iCarol customers, we have witnessed the Lifeline’s growth year after year, both in the number of participating centers and the volume of contacts the Lifeline receives through calls, chats, and other forms of communication, and eventually transitioning to the 988 initiative. At this year’s update we’re anticipating the latest news on the development and growth of the 988 network. We’re closely following the continuing conversations on how communities are changing their practices around responding to mental health emergencies and similar crises, with a continuing shift towards crisis intervention teams and other professionals leading the response as opposed to law enforcement.
iCarol enthusiastically supports the efforts to reimagine crisis response in communities across the United States. It’s crucial that people everywhere have access to human-focused, culturally competent crisis care that meets their needs whether that be through an empathetic listener on a crisis line, an in-person visit from a mobile crisis response team, or a stay at a crisis stabilization center. It’s our mission to provide tools to crisis centers that help them respond to their community’s needs. We hope you’ll explore our website to learn more about how we are serving this industry.
The discussions at AAS directly inform iCarol’s strategy and product development in the coming months and years, which ensures we will continue to meet the needs of suicide prevention and crisis centers everywhere, providing the tools they need to do their life-saving work. That’s why we want to ensure we take advantage of being together in-person in Portland to have conversations about challenges, needs, and solutions. If you plan to be at the AAS Conference, please stop by our booth to download our guides and materials, including our ebook on choosing software for crisis intervention and suicide prevention services. Aaron will be available for meetings at your convenience to answer your questions, or have conversations about your challenges or projects and explore how iCarol can be of assistance.
Even with increased awareness and understanding about mental health and mental illness, mental health care, particularly psychiatric care, can still be difficult to access. This often leaves Primary Care Physicians (PCPs), nurses, and other healthcare workers on the frontlines of mental health care in the United States.
However, in Utah PCPs can access specialized psychiatric consultations through the Consultation Access Link Line to Utah Psychiatry (CALL-UP) Program. This legislative funded program is designed to address the limited number of psychiatric services in Utah and improve access to them, and serves patients at no cost to providers or patients in the state of Utah.
iCarol is proud to play a role in the service delivery of CALL-UP, through CALL-UP’s use of iCarol for psychiatrist on-call shift sign up, CALL-UP program documentation to maintain state funding, and through iCarol’s Public Web Forms.
Here’s how iCarol fits into the service delivery workflow of the CALL-UP program in Utah:
The on-call service for psychiatry consultation is available Monday through Friday from 12:00pm to 4:30 pm. Participating psychiatrists are invited by the CALL-UP program administrators to sign into the iCarol system to sign up for shifts where they will be on-call for consultations.
Primary Care Physicians (PCPs) are instructed to contact the CALL-UP program to request a consultation. If the PCP calls in, CALL-UP staff collect basic demographic, needs, and other important data from the PCP in order to comply with state funding requirements, which is input by the phone specialist into iCarol, using an iCarol Contact Form. Then, they can forward the call to the on-call psychiatrist for the consultation to occur.
PCPs can also request a consultation online, using an iCarol Public Web Form. The form has a built-in screening element that first ensures the requestor is a physician, as this is a requirement for program access. If they are not a physician, a prompt instructs them to please contact their doctor.
If the requestor is a PCP then they continue to use the form to provide the information needed to obtain a consultation, including the demographic and other information required to maintain state funding.
Once the Public Web Form is received by CALL-UP staff, they have the information they need to contact the PCP requesting consultation, and connect them with the on-call psychiatrist. Because the iCarol Web Form is simply a publicly available iCarol Contact Form, they already have the data they need, automatically submitted to iCarol with the form, to meet their reporting requirements.
For more information about Utah’s CALL-UP Program, visit their website.
Want to learn more about Public Web Forms and talk through how they might be used for your program or partnership?
iCarol Public Web Forms take the power of data collection and custom workflows available to your iCarol system users inside the iCarol application, and brings them online for public use.
This means that visitors to your public website could fill out a webform, submit it, and the completed form and data comes into your iCarol system, and is available for reporting, exporting, and placing a client into any other workflows so they can receive your services. What you do with the information is completely dependent on your particular use case! Some common uses of Public Web Forms are:
Service Inquiries – Offer people another way to get in touch with you and inquire about your services. Let them provide you with needed information at the time that’s most convenient for them, then follow-up with them by phone, text, or email. You can even text or email them from within your iCarol system!
Program Enrollment – Invite folks to sign up for one or more services you offer. Once their completed form is in your iCarol system and you validate it, it’s easy to create a profile and begin any other workflows to enroll them in services.
Accept Warm Referrals from Partner Agencies – If a local provider refers clients to you for services, that provider can use your Public Web Form URL to enroll or request services for a client.
And those are just a few of the ways this service is being used.
In a recent Monthly Support Training we walked through several use cases to show how Public Web Forms can be the entry point that results in a number of new ways to help your community and better engage partners and collaborators to improve care coordination and continuums of care.
We’ve also added a lot of functionality to Public Web Forms recently. For instance, did you know that with iCarol Public Web Forms you can…
Include simple password protection, if you want to allow the form to be easily found on your website for ease of access, but only usable and fillable by authorized partners
Create Follow-up Activities automatically when they arrive in your iCarol system
Upload documents like consent forms, authorizations, proof of identity, etc. with a form submission
Restrict form availability to certain days and hours, so people are directed to the right service at the right time
Embed pre-screening questions that redirect a client to a more appropriate contact method and disable form submission if they don’t enter the right pre-qualifying criteria
Notify key staff when a new form arrives in your system
If you haven’t explored Public Web Forms for your agency lately, now’s the time to take another look.
iCarol Customers can view our recent Monthly Support Training by logging into iCarol, navigating to our Help Center, and searching for Public Web Forms.
We’d also be delighted to have a quick meeting with you to talk about your needs, answer your questions, or provide a demo of the product. You can schedule a meeting here or simply Email us!
Whether you trialed Automated Follow-ups or not, we want to hear from you!
As you may have heard, iCarol recently wrapped up a trial of a new Automated Follow-ups Feature.
In order to learn from this experience and plan for future feature releases and trials, we are requesting customer feedback in the form of a survey.
We are encouraging all iCarol customers to take the survey, even if you did not know about Automated Follow-ups or if you did not participate in the trial. The survey takes less than 1 minute to complete – log in to iCarol and navigate to our Help Center or Admin Dashboard for the link to the survey!
With our latest release of version 3.77, our new Automated Follow-ups Feature is now available! All iCarol subscribers have access to try Automated Follow-ups at no additional cost, for a limited time. Read on to learn more!
What is the Automated Follow-ups Feature?
Once enabled, this tool lets you create templates of configured follow-up activities, then automatically schedules those follow-ups when you submit the Contact Form. If follow-ups are set to occur by Email or SMS/Text, iCarol can send follow-ups automatically on your behalf according to the schedule. You can even link to surveys* or other forms* you want the client to fill out.
*Note you must subscribe to Public Web Forms to make use of the surveys. Sending outbound SMS/Texts may require additional nominals fees, please email us for details!
How will Automated Follow-ups help my organization and the people I serve?
Many of our customers say that they wish they could do more follow-up with clients, but limited staff and time prevent them from having robust follow-up programs. Because the tool allows you to both schedule one or multiple follow-up activities, and in many cases carry out these follow-ups on your behalf through emails and outgoing SMS/Texts, you’ll be better able to:
Meet and exceed your satisfaction survey and quality assurance commitments
Get more outcome data directly from your clients
Have ongoing communication with more clients in more ways
Reassure clients with ongoing warm reach outs
Where can I learn more about how to enable and use Automated Follow-ups?
Sign in to iCarol, open the Help Center, and then click here to read our training materials.
Join an upcoming training webinar. Dates and registration information is in the iCarol Help Center.
Tell me more about the free trial!
Automated Follow-ups are available to all iCarol customer organizations starting now through February 28, 2023. Our training webinars and help article share details on how you can enable the feature and set up your templates.
Try it for the next few months to see if this feature is for you. The first 20 organizations to subscribe before the trial ends will pay no setup costs! Please email us for information on subscription costs to use Automated Follow-ups once the trial period ends.
We’re here to support you and help you make the most of the Automated Follow-ups trial period. Please join one of our many scheduled training webinars, read our help articles, or open a ticket with the Support Team to learn more.
Of course that means creating a safe space where everyone is encouraged to live as their authentic selves and express who they are and how they wish to be addressed. That feeling extends to all of our customer organizations and end users of the iCarol software.
In the iCarol Help Center Community, and in responses to our latest customer survey, we received several requests for the ability for volunteers and staff users to note their pronouns within the iCarol system.
We’re excited to announce that sharing one’s pronouns in their volunteer/staff profile is a new enhancement that will be included in our latest release to iCarol. This release is expected to go into affect today, Tuesday, June 14.
Enabling and using pronouns in iCarol is easy. If a volunteer or staff member would like to share their pronouns, they should first edit their profile, then choose their pronouns from the dropdown menu, and click the ‘Save’ button.
Once enabled, a user’s pronouns will appear alongside their name throughout the different areas of iCarol where knowing a person’s pronouns will help you communicate and address them as they wish to be addressed, such as the main Contacts page.
And when viewing shifts.
Learning and then using a person’s correct pronouns creates a healthy and safe workplace environment, conveys respect, and affirms one’s identity. We hope this enhancement will help you and your team support one another and foster inclusion within your organization! If you have any questions, please open a ticket with our Support Team using the iCarol Help Center!
It’s hard to believe that soon we’ll be closing out yet another year. The passage of time has felt especially fast lately. The year prior, everything was exceptionally strange and most agree 2020 far overstayed its welcome. By comparison, the months each felt only a few days long throughout 2021.
For our customers, 2021 was another year where you were asked to do more for your communities than ever before, stretching your resources as much as possible to meet emergent and rapidly evolving needs. Many of our customer organizations continued to play a critical roll in COVID-19 response, for example contracting with local health authorities to take calls for COVID-19 hotlines and in many cases assisting with vaccine rollout efforts. As a result, you have improved the health of your communities and helped save lives. We couldn’t be more proud or honored to be associated with the amazing work you do.
The global pandemic advanced the need for communities to solve problems by coordinating efforts between agencies to reduce duplication of work and ease participation for consumers of services, all while collecting and sharing important data to prove impact that drives creation of new services and the funding to make it happen. As a result, we’ve received more requests than ever before from customers who need to participate in health information exchanges, securely pass intake information to a partner, and close the loop on outcomes and results of the services received. We’re delighted that our customers are making use of iCarol’s flexibility to help you leverage your data and say “yes” to these projects, and it has motivated us to continue to stay ahead of the innovation happening in these areas. Meeting your needs with technology, and giving you options in how you can engage with others to help your communities, will always be something that drives us here at iCarol.
Looking ahead, we know that the impacts of COVID will be with us for a long time to come, and so we’re prepared to continue brainstorming solutions with you as needs evolve. We expect the mental health and economic impacts to reverberate for years to come, which means your core services providing listening and empathy, connection to helpful services, and crisis intervention will be more important than ever. It’s appropriate timing that the U.S. will launch three digit dialing for suicide prevention and mental/behavioral health crises in the form of 9-8-8, coming in July of 2022. We’ve spoken to many organizations who will be participating 988 centers asking us how iCarol can assist. We’re committed to helping this new network meet its goals of creating better, more comprehensive mental and behavioral health systems and look forward to those continuing conversations, your ideas, and finally seeing 9-8-8 become a reality in July.
In envisioning new and better ways for the systems of care to work, we understand that your work is growing less transactional and more about seeing someone through a situation long term, building a relationship and being a part of their network of support. To that end, you may recall we asked you some questions a few months back about your case management needs and how well they are being served by us. We’re excited to say that thanks to your feedback, we’ve discovered several areas where we can improve and add tools to iCarol that will help you do this work better. To learn a bit more about this, I hope you’ll join our upcoming annual “State of iCarol” webinar in January where we’ll share some of what we have in mind for these sorts of developments in 2022. Stay tuned to the blog, and watch your iCarol Dashboard and email inbox for an invite. If you don’t already get our emails, I hope you’ll sign up here so we can stay in touch with you.
I hope that each of you, and your entire teams, can take time to be with the people and do the things that are most meaningful and rejuvenating for you. We see you, your dedication to your work of helping others and improving the world around you, and the clear positive impact you have. We look forward to another year serving you and wish you a happy holiday season and a bright New Year.
The iCarol Support Team holds monthly trainings on topics that our customers want more information about. These trainings are offered on the third Wednesday of every month at 2pm Eastern.
Our topic for the December webinar is ReferralQ & Capacity Tracking and Provider Portal features.
ReferralQ and Capacity Tracking enables you to document and track referrals to a particular service that you work closely with, including information such as the service’s capacity to accept referrals. The Provider Portal is a separate product that complements ReferralQ by inviting your partners secure, direct access to view and update authorized ReferralQ information. With the Provider Portal your partners can input their program’s capacity to take referrals, obtain Contact Record or Intake information about the help-seekers referred to them, and update the status of a referred help-seeker as they work with the CBO.
We’re excited to share more information about these products with our customers on our next monthly training webinar!
Date: Wednesday, December 15
Time: 2pm Eastern
During this webinar, participants will learn:
What is the ReferralQ & Capacity Tracking feature?
What is the Provider Portal feature?
How can these features be used together?
What are some use cases for the features?
We welcome and encourage our customers to attend! You can find the registration link on the Admin Dashboard or in our Help Center announcements.
Did you know that iCarol’s Resource Database API is now fully bi-directional?
What does this mean? iCarol Resource database records can now be created and/or updated using the API.
iCarol was a pioneer among the I&R and Contact Center Software vendors with our Resource Database API, which was first released in 2013.
We’ve done it again with these new enhancements that can now be done outside of iCarol, directly into to your iCarol Resource database using the Resource Database API:
Update, create, or delete resource records from external software systems
Save time, increase efficiency, get new records from your partners quicker than ever—when time is of the essence
Decide to have new records and updates happen automatically, or as part of an automated verification process
Maintain necessary control of how you want the partnerships to work, while having flexibility to change quickly as needed
And we’ve continued with the ability we’ve always had where you can provide different partners different key access with different permissions
Here are just some possibilities that have been discussed with this new enhancement:
Open the door to partnership ideas and revenue streams that were not possible before
Feed data to warehouses and/or reporting tools and accept changes to the records in iCarol from those external sources
Partner with other referral partners who may be on other information and referral software, in more ways than ever before
Allow more options to health and human service partners who need direct access your resource database and need to let you know of new additions and changes themselves
Make yourself more marketable to healthcare providers/for healthcare partnerships who may be interested in access to your resource database, and may want easier options to let you know of changes to resources
Collaboration, coalition and Community Information Exchange (CIE) efforts can be even more streamlined
An overview of capabilities that have been available for some time with the iCarol Resource API:
And here’s what’s NEW:
Now is the perfect time to explore what iCarol’s Bi-direction Resource API can do for your organization and your partners.
Are you a current iCarol user? As we’ve previously shared, our November Support Training is about the API! Join our webinar Wednesday, November 17th at 2:00pm Eastern. Register by signing in to iCarol and opening the iCarol Help Center where the webinar description and registration link is posted as an Announcement.
Data shows that when specialists respond to mental health crises, everyone is safer and outcomes are better. That’s why communities everywhere are investing in crisis intervention teams as an alternative to 9-1-1 and law enforcement in response to crisis, suicide ideation, homelessness, substance abuse, and more.
One way iCarol organizations are improving their workflows around Mobile Crisis Dispatch is by using Public Web Forms.
Our Public Web Forms are essentially a public-facing version of the same forms our customers use internally in the iCarol web application to log their contacts with clients, collect data, and provide resource and referral information. When placed on a website, these forms can be used for purposes such as intake and eligibility screening or service requests. Once a form is submitted by the web visitor, it arrives in the iCarol system as a completed Contact Form where it can be dispositioned as appropriate by contact center staff, and work with other elements of iCarol to take their purpose even further.
One example of how our customers use Public Web Forms is for Mobile Crisis Team dispatch. In a traditional workflow, someone in need of Mobile Crisis might call the contact center, and a specialist will process their request and complete an intake form over the phone, print it, and fax it to a team who will respond in person. In some centers using disparate systems for different departments, they may even encounter processes where paper or electronic forms are passed between departments requiring specialist to do manual data entry for their data collection.
A Crisis Team Dispatch workflow using a Public Web Form may look something like this:
A crisis services provider has a web page outlining their Mobile Crisis offerings, and places the link to a request form on the web page.
The person requesting response fills out the form, configured by the provider, requesting services and providing information about the situation.
If certain criteria must be met in order to request services via form, a pre-screening element can be built in which directs the person to call instead and speak to a specialist live, if they don’t meet the eligibility requirements to submit a form online.
Submitted forms arrive in the iCarol system and certain staff are notified of submission by email.
The specialist opens the form, contacts the requestor if necessary to fill in additional information, and explain to the requestor what will happen next.
The form is shared with the team providing the direct Mobile Crisis response. In iCarol, forms can sent in many ways: password protected and emailed within the system, sent to a secure Provider Portal for responders to access, transmitted electronically to another software system, are just a few examples.
The crisis team receives the necessary information, and responds.
The crisis team can then disposition the visit according to their protocols, and can add additional data to the form electronically to close the loop and provide the contact center with outcome data and more.
This is just one way Public Web Forms are being used, and we look forward to bringing you more of these stories in the coming days.
Want to learn more about Public Web Forms and talk through how they might be used for your program or partnership?