Cancellation and Continuity of Support Policy

The purpose of this document is to ensure all Umbo staff, volunteers, contractors and clients are aware of Umbo’s cancellation policy which aims to ensure the continuity of support provision.

Principles

Umbo’s cancellation policy aims to utilise cancelled appointment times effectively and minimise waitlist times for our clients.

Umbo aims to ensure each client accesses timely and appropriate support without interruption. Umbo ensures the management of operations is efficient and effective so as to avoid disruption and ensure the continuity of support provision.

All support is planned in collaboration with the client and provided to meet their specific needs, goals and preferences. These needs and goals are well documented and provided to clinicians before the commencement of support to ensure the support is consistent with the client’s expressed preferences.

Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of the clinician to ensure they schedule sessions with a client at a time they can attend to provide the highest quality support. If a clinician needs to cancel an appointment, it is their responsibility to follow the procedure provided below.

It is the responsibility of the client to communicate with the clinician and schedule a session that they can attend in order to receive the best support they can. If a client needs to cancel an appointment, it is their responsibility to follow the procedure provided below.

If a clinician is no longer able to attend a session

From time to time a clinician may have to cancel a scheduled appointment due to illness, to attend a conference, annual leave or other unforeseen circumstances. In the unfortunate event that a clinician is no longer able to attend a scheduled session, clients will be supported to reschedule an appointment where practical and available within the clinician’s appointment schedule.

The clinician will make every endeavour to advise the client with a minimum of 24 hours’ notice by phone, email or SMS where practical. In the case of illness or unforeseen circumstances, the clinician will likely advise the client before 8:30am on the day of the scheduled appointment by phone or SMS.

If it is appropriate, all effort will be made to organise an equivalently qualified clinician to complete the session in the absence of a client’s main clinician.  This alternate clinician will be well informed on the client’s needs, goals and progress before the session starts to ensure the session provides adequate and consistent support.

If a client is no longer able to attend a session

This policy aims to incentivise clients to give as much notice as possible if an appointment needs to be cancelled, as Umbo would like to use this cancelled appointment time to allow other clients to receive support, or to carry out the essential jobs that help our clients receive the best support they can.

Please be aware that each schedule appointment has been reserved for a client’s individual attention and, as such, it generally prevents other clients from taking the appointment time. Late notice or non-attendance deprives others of the opportunity of having an appointment. It is also important to note that regular cancellations can impact negatively on a client’s therapy goals.

Umbo is sensitive to the fact that clients are unable to attend appointments due to issues that arise out of their control, such as illness.

If a client is no longer able to attend a scheduled session, they must alert their clinician via email or contact Umbo via phone, live chat, or email. Please note that since Umbo sends out automated SMSs which cannot be responded to, clients informing Umbo via SMS will not be accepted as notice that the client cannot attend.

If less than 24 hours’ notice is given, the client will be required to pay the full fee (100%) for the session.

A late cancellation will be charged to a client's record and an invoice will be generated and sent to the client.

If a client fails to attend a scheduled appointment, this will be considered a late cancellation and the client is required to pay the full session fee. 

If a client is no longer able to attend a scheduled session and more than 24 hours’ notice is given, the client will not face any fees and it will be requested that they reschedule an additional session within two weeks if possible.

If a client cancels 3 sessions consecutively or does not show up for 3 sessions consecutively, then Umbo reserves the right to put the client back on the waitlist until they are ready to engage with therapy. 

If technical difficulties occur

While Umbo will take all necessary steps to ensure both the client and the clinician conducts the session in an environment with adequate technology, there may be technical difficulties that are out of anyone’s control which disrupt the provision of the service. Umbo is dedicated to preventing such difficulties, however, in the event that this does occur the following steps should be followed:

1.     SMS or email as soon as issue identified. This will come from the person experiencing the technical issue

2.     Phone call between clinician and client to attempt to resolve the issue

3.     If issue can’t be resolved – can the session take place over the phone? If so – commence session

4.     If session can’t be undertaken then a reschedule will need to occur. If the technical issue is the fault of the clinician, then there is no fee. If the technical issue is at the fault of the client, then the session will need to be rescheduled within two weeks or the full session fee will be charged

Continuous improvement 

Umbo will ensure this continuity of support policy and procedure undergoes periodic review to maintain the support of our clients. Umbo will seek feedback from clients on this procedure, and incorporate this feedback into review.