It’s that time of year again, when patients preparing for their first semester at college flock to medical offices and pharmacies to receive their required vaccines for school. Fire up the immunization tracking software.
And invariably, the same conversation ensues over and over:
“What vaccinations have you received in the past?”
Patient: “Ummm… those ones I had when I was little? And the flu vaccine…I don’t remember when.”
For most healthcare providers, the vaccine debate isn’t whether about whether a person should receive immunizations or not. The real debate is whether a patient has already received the right vaccines for their age group or lifestyle, and whether their immunization record is being tracked properly.
Enter immunization tracking software.
An article written in HealthITBuzz by members of the American Immunization Registry Association, James Daniel, Rebecca Cole and Alison Chi, says these software solutions “are confidential, population-based, computerized systems that record all vaccination doses administered by participating providers to people within a given area.”
Keeping track of all of a patient’s immunizations can get bogged down by the sheer number of available vaccines, the average number of patients needing immunizations, and the CDC-recommended schedule. After all, if you had to fill in the historical blanks in a vaccine chart like this for every patient, you might want to end it all:
And that’s just for children.
Here are a few immunization tracking software and EHR software companies that can help you keep your patients (and your sanity) in check:
MediEase by SynCo
“MediEase is the premier immunization compliance calculation and tracking software since its introduction in 1995. MediEase was first introduced to the college and university health services communities and moved to Managed Care, Medical and Dental Schools, hospitals and EMS organizations.”
HealthRX Vaccine Manager by Nexus
As advertised, you can use this immunization tracking software on your iPad. Thank goodness.
“HealthRx’s Vaccine Manager records and tracks vaccination data and creates comprehensive reports for multiple concurrent vaccination efforts. It’s scalable to any size organization and can interface databases to leverage contact information, employment status, and other data. VM even accepts both bar code scans and keystroke data entry and makes list maintenance as easy as entering a name in a search ﬁeld.”
According to Tom Dugas, computer scientist, “Carnegie Mellon implemented a solution called Point n Click (www.pointnclick.com) for student health and counseling. It is primarily suited for Health Services organization but it does offer a Student Web Portal that provides web based immunization tracking that is HIPAA compliant if implemented with the right controls.”
“It has saved us tons of time each year tracking immunizations electronically for incoming students versus our old paper form process. It also does secure messaging for Health Information keeping it all on our servers so if you have to send messages to students about their immunizations you aren’t doing it via email which could be a security issue.”
The CDC provides an easy-to-use option to order and track publicly-funded vaccine programs. “VTrckS is a robust vaccine management application that allows CDC, awardees, and providers to order and manage publicly-funded vaccines more efficiently.”
Getting ready to take on the super-helpful, summer pre-clinical intern? Need to make sure they have received all of their immunizations? PreCheck can verify their record before they hit your office.
“[PreCheck’s] Immunization Tracker is a web-based solution that tracks, manages and validates immunization documentation. This service helps healthcare organizations and allied health education institutions and health science programs meet clinical rotation site requirements more easily.”
“Our purpose is to eliminate the burden of processing health forms for students or healthcare employees.”
Getting To the Point
“As more providers use these systems the goal of interoperability will be achieved, which will ultimately allow immunization providers to work more efficiently, identify patients due for immunizations faster, and ensure that people get the vaccinations they need when they need them,” say Daniel, Coyle and Chi.
Know of any other immunization tracking software options that we missed? Tell us about them in the comments below.