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I use a spreadsheet in my medical office for referrals. It includes places to fill in these three areas: date faxed, date of the appointment, date the appointment office notes were received. The problem is that sometimes people don't go to the appointments. I want the 'date of the appointment' box to highlight in yellow if it has been 1 month since the 'date faxed' and no appointment date has been entered. I also want to have the 'date of the appointment' box changed to a red highlight if it has been 6 months since the 'date faxed' and no appointment date has been entered. How would I go about doing this on the Google drive spreadsheet?

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Google spreadsheet's conditional formatting is much more limited than Excel. You can only change a cell's color based on its own value, not the value of other cells. So you'll have to add a new column.

Let's say that Column A is the Date Faxed, Column B is Appointment Date.

  1. Create Column C called "Days Elapsed". Go to cell C2 and give it a formula of
    =if(isblank(B2), today()-A2, "")
    What that does is calculate the Days Elapsed since Date Faxed, or if there's a value for Appointment Date, then leave it blank.

  2. Fill Down the formula from C2 to the bottom of the sheet.

  3. Select the entire Column C. Format > Conditional formatting. Add rules:

    a. if greater than 180, background red
    b. if greater than 30, background yellow

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  1. date faxed is in A1
  2. date of the appointment is in B1
  3. date the appointment office notes were received is in C1

then with New Google Sheets enter:

in B1 Custom formula is =today()-30>A1
in C1 Custom formula is =and(isblank(C1),today()-180>A1)

with Background to suit.

I have approximated one month as 30 days and six months as 180 days but it might be possible to be more precise if required.

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