How to Document a Paper Referral from a Partner Agency

Paper referrals, meaning referrals that are received via a form, fax, paper, etc. are documented on the Inquiry screen.

  1. Search for the Inquiry screen using the search icon.
  2. Select “Inquiries (My Office)”Search for the Inquiry screen
  3. This will bring you to the Inquiries list page. Create a new inquiry by using the new icon.
    Create a new inquiry
  4. This will bring up the client search window. You may search to determine if the person is a current client. If person is a new client, or you cannot find them in the system, click “Inquiry (New Client)”.
    You may search to determine if the person is a current client
    1. To search for a client, enter their name and click “Broad Search.” You can also search by SSN by entering their social security number and clicking “SSN Search.” You can do the same with date of birth (DOB), phone number, etc. If you find the person in the system, meaning they show in the Records Found section, click “Select” to bring their information into the Inquiry screen.
      Broad Search
  5. This brings you to the Inquiry Details screen. Complete the information about the person requesting services, or “Inquirer”.
    1. Make sure to input the date and time you received the referral in Start Date and Start Time. There are buttons for “T” (today) and “Now” to help make this quick and easy.
      Complete the information
    2. To complete the rest of the referring agency’s information, navigate to the Referral Resource section further down on the page. Your county may choose to leave the inquirer information blank and simply enter the agency information, along with contact person, in this section. This section’s information currently does not show on the list page, however.
      complete the rest of the referring agency’s information
  6. Complete the information about the potential client.
    1. Complete the First Name and Last Name fields. Middle Name is not required but can be added as necessary.
    2. Complete the SSN and DOB fields. This is for the client’s social security number (SSN) and date of birth (DOB), respectively. If the client refuses to share, or doesn’t know, you can simply check the box “SSN Unknown/Refused.” Once saved, this will fill in the SSN with “999999999”, which is SmartCare’s version of “no SSN”.
    3. Complete the Sex field.
    4. Complete the Urgency Level, Inquiry type, and Contact type fields. The options for each field are listed in the tables below. This includes a description of when to use each option.
    5. Click Save.
      Complete the information about the potential client
Urgency LevelDescription/Use CaseTimelines
EmergentUse if the referral is an emergencyAddressed immediately
Not UrgentUse if the referral is a routine request for servicesAppointment within 10 business days
UrgentUse if the referral is an urgent request for servicesAppointment within 72 hours
Inquiry TypeDescription/Use Case
Requests for services/screeningUse when the referral is a request for new services
CrisisUse when the referral is for crisis services
InformationUse when the referral is for information
Discharge/Transition CoordinationUse when the referral is for another provider to coordinate transition of care to/from your agency
Jail DiversionUse when the referral is related to Jail Diversion programs
ConsultationUse when the referral is for an outside provider seeking a consultation
OtherUse when the referral is not addressed by any of the above
Contact TypeDescription/Use Case
CallUse when the inquiry was complete via telephone
Face to FaceUse when the inquiry was completed via in-person, such as a walk-in
FormUse when the inquiry was completed via form, such as a referral that was sent to the county
TeleconferenceUse when the inquiry was complete via teleconference, such as Zoom, FaceTime, Webex, or other video-audio conferencing software
  1. Select the “Link/Create Client” button. This will bring up the client search window, with a few extra buttons at the bottom.
    Select the “Link/Create Client” button
    1. You must search by name by clicking on either “Broad Search” or “Narrow Search”.
    2. You must also search by SSN and DOB by clicking on those respective buttons.
      search by SSN and DOB
    3. If no records are found based on the search you do, an alert will show at the top of the window.
      If no records are found
    4. Any search results will show in the “Records Found” area. Review the Records Found to determine if the person is already in the system as a client.
    5. If the person is already a client in the system, select the button next to the appropriate record.
    6. Click “Select” to link the Inquiry to the selected client.
    7. If the person is not a client, meaning no records were found matching the client’s information, click “Create New Client Record.”
      Create New Client Record
    8. This will take you back to the Inquiry screen but now a client ID number will be added.
  2. Click on the “Insurance” tab.
    1. Select “Medi-Cal” from the “Payer” drop-down and enter the client’s Medi-Cal number (CIN) in the “Insurance ID” field. Click “Verify” to verify the client’s Medi-Cal insurance.
  3. Click on the “Demographics” tab.
    1. We recommend completing the “Gender Identity” and “Pronoun” fields to ensure the person is not misgendered as additional staff engage with the client.
    2. Complete the “Primary/Preferred Language” field. If the client does not speak English or requires an interpreter, make sure to check the appropriate checkbox.
      Primary/Preferred Language
  4. You may enter any additional information in any of the tabs, but none are required. Once complete, enter the end date and time of the Inquiry and change the status to “Complete”. Once again, there are “T” (today) and “Now” buttons to make this easier.
  5. Click Save. You may now close the Inquiry and move on to Screening.
    move on to Screening


NOTE: The Disposition section is optional. CalMHSA is working on development for this section and additional functionality and training is forthcoming. However, in the meantime, the “Disposition” and “Disposition Comments” will be available fields.

Under the Select Disposition, select the next clinical step in the process. Broadly, this will be something like “Screening” or “Assessment”. *

If the client is not making a request for services, you can simply leave this section blank. Enter any comments in the Disposition Comments field.