Reminder Systems and
Strategies for Increasing Childhood Vaccination Rates
An important component of an immunization provider practice is ensuring that the vaccines reach all individuals who need them. While attention to appropriate administration of vaccinations is essential, it cannot be assumed that these vaccinations are being given to every eligible person at the recommended age.
Specific concerns about U.S. immunization levels and areas for further study include the following:
- Childhood immunization rates are still suboptimal.
- Economic and racial disparities exist.
This page offers many resources and publications describing the need for increasing immunization levels and outlines strategies that providers can adopt to increase coverage in their own practice.
Specific strategies to increase Adult vaccination rates can be found on the Adult Vaccination Information for Healthcare and Public Health Professionals website.
- "Immunization Strategies": CDC's strategies that lead to high immunization levels in a practice - Chapter 3 in the "Pink Book" May 2012
Explains the need for strategies to increase immunization rates, the AFIX approach (assessment, feedback, incentives, eXchange), and other essential strategies such as recordkeeping, recommendations and reinforcement, reminder and recall to patients and providers, reduction of missed opportunities and barriers to immunization.
- Immunization Information Systems
Many recordkeeping tasks, as well as patient reminder/recall activities, can be greatly simplified by participation in a population-based immunization information system (IIS), also known as an immunization registry.
- Increasing Appropriate Vaccination: Client Reminder and Recall Systems
CDC's The Community Guide Feb 2008
Summary of the Task Force Recommendations and Findings covering reviews done 1980-2007.
- Closing the Gap: Achieving Coverage Rate Increases [15 slides] (posted 2007)
- Recommendations of the ACIP: Programmatic Strategies to Increase Vaccination Rates -- Assessment and Feedback of Provider-Based Vaccination Coverage Information (published 1996; historical document)
- Checklist: Suggestions to Improve Your Immunization Services [2 pages] June 2008 Immunization Action Coalition
For healthcare professionals to improve they efficiency in administering vaccines and increase their immunization rates.
- Population vs. Practice-Based Interventions to Increase Immunization Rates in Young Children [23 pages]October 2012
- Strategies for Improving Health Care Personnel Influenza Vaccination Rates [1 page] April 2012
The Joint Commission
Cost-effectiveness needs more research. More research is needed regarding which strategies increase immunization levels with the least expenditure so these strategies can be prioritized.
Sustainable systems for vaccinating children, adolescents, and adults must be developed. High immunization rates cannot rest upon one-time or short-term efforts. Greater understanding of strategies to increase and sustain immunization levels is necessary in order to create lasting, effective immunization delivery systems.
Many strategies have been used to increase immunizations. Some, such as school entry laws, have effectively increased demand for vaccines, but the effectiveness of other strategies (e.g., advertising) is less well documented. Some proven strategies (e.g., reducing costs, linking immunization to Women Infants and Children (WIC) services, home visiting) are well suited to increasing rates among specific populations, such as persons with low access to immunization services.
A few of the articles published on this topic are listed below.
- Increasing Adolescent Immunization Rates in Primary Care: Strategies Physicians Use and Would Consider Implementing
Clin Pediatr; 2013;52(8):710-20
- Effectiveness and Cost of Immunization Recall at School-Based Health Centers
- Text Message Reminders to Promote Human Papillomavirus Vaccination
- Increasing Immunization Coverage
- IDSA's policy to strengthen adult and adolescent immunization coverage Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA)
lin Infect Dis; 2007;44:1529-1531
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