Immunization Registries: For Your Back-to-School List
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CMS EHR Incentive Programs
Immunization Registries have been a part of the public health objectives associated with the CMS EHR Incentive Programs from the beginning. In stage 2, the objective is the capability to submit electronic data to immunization registries or immunization information systems except where prohibited, and in accordance with applicable law and practice. Providers achieve this by successful ongoing submission of electronic immunization data from certified EHR technology (CEHRT) to an immunization registry or immunization information system for the entire EHR reporting period.
CDC IIS Strategy Initiative
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD) released its Immunization Information Systems (IIS) Strategic Plan in November of 2013. The plan outlines 18 initiatives in the five key focus areas of Nationwide Leadership, Sustainability, Provider Services, Public Health Services, and Interoperability and Data Management. In its current state, the IIS is a centralized system of record of immunizations that stores data (including patient’s name, demographics, and immunization records) for all residents of the community it represents. “The purpose of the IIS is to consolidate immunization information from providers into one database to provide an accurate immunization assessment and eliminate the use of manual vaccine administration logs.” (Immunization Information Systems (IIS) Strategic Plan, Executive Summary.) Future goals includes leadership through a national level management program, sufficient local and state funds to ensure sustainability, and provider services inputting data immediately.
Heading Back to School
What does this mean for Back-to-School time? Depending on the state you live in and their laws, some schools and health plans participate in various IIS. This type of partnership, with school, can provide invaluable data on immunization trends, which in turn can guide community awareness and identify areas of need for public health improvements. The federal Vaccine for Children (VFC) program has has partnered with immunization information systems recently. By helping federal government, individual states, and providers ensure the accurate and efficient monitoring of the vaccination process (from ordering, to inventory, and recording,) the systems play a supporting role in the VFC’s initiative.
Immunization Action Coalition
To learn more, the Immunization Action Coalition @ImmunizeAction provides information for healthcare professionals and their patients. To find out more about your state’s laws regarding immunizations click here.
For more information about immunization information systems (IIS) click here.