3 ways to make your occupational flu program less chaotic
Managing a large-scale flu vaccination program, especially one that is mandatory for employees, is a huge undertaking. With the open clinic portion of this year’s campaign complete, it’s time to turn your focus toward assessing the program. As you look for ways to improve efficiency and accuracy, be sure to evaluate the following processes.
Employee registration and check-in
The employee registration and check-in process during a flu clinic can be a major time drain. Physically handling and sorting through stacks of forms is frustrating, and it can be challenging to make sure they get “attached” to the correct employees when scanned. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Electronic registration via employee portals eliminates these hassles by enabling you to connect with employees and request that they complete forms prior to arriving to receive their flu shot — including consent and declination forms along with an employee e-signature. Not only does this alleviate the dreaded paper shuffle, but it also eliminates the problem of illegible forms or those with missing information. With electronic registration, employees who do not complete forms before arriving at the clinic can do so on a tablet device. Once “upload” is clicked, the form uploads as a document in the employee’s chart, eliminating the need to print the consent, and scan or fax it back into the system.
Want to make check-in even faster? Connect an employee badge reader device to your electronic occupational health IT solution to eliminate the need to key in employee ID numbers or names.
Healthcare providers are generally frustrated by the number of clicks it takes to do anything in many EHRs, including enter vaccination information. One article posted on Healthleaders.com cites a doctor who explained that it takes her 32 clicks to document giving a flu shot with her EHR. How many clicks does it take to enter each shot during your flu program clinics?
Specialized injection and immunization functionality within an occ health IT solution gives health professionals performing the vaccinations the tools for an efficient, effective process.
For example, with Enterprise Health, clinicians can review and document vaccine administration tasks on one screen. The system pulls certain information forward from patient injection to patient injection during a mass immunization clinic. Clinicians don’t have to reenter vaccination date; vaccine type; lot number; manufacturer; patient receipt of VIS — including edition date and date VIS provided; injection site; vaccination route; dosage; and name of who administered the vaccination. He or she just reviews the information to make sure nothing has changed from the injection administered to the previous employee.
Another benefit of using an occ health IT solution with specialized flu management functionality is automated allergy notifications. After the employee’s badge is scanned or name is entered, the system will automatically reference the employee’s health record and an alert will appear on the screen if the employee has a documented allergy to eggs or history of GBS.
Immunization status and reporting
Throughout this year’s program, was it easy to see accurate, up-to-date information on immunization status? And now that your program is complete, is it easy to pull the required information to report to the National Healthcare Safety Network (NHSN)?
When managing a large-scale, mandatory flu vaccination program, accessing and reporting on immunization data is crucial — especially during the last few days of the program. You may need to pull reports several times each day to provide department managers with current information on the status of employees they supervise. Using a manual, paper-based system or even a cobbled-together solution of spreadsheets and databases can make this level of reporting virtually impossible.
An occ health IT solution with specialized immunization functionality stores all data in one place expanding capabilities and streamlining the process. Users can generate reports detailing how many immunizations were administered each day or how many employees still need vaccinations by department or job title. The information can then be easily shared with department supervisors who can “nudge” employees who have not yet complied.
These are just a few areas where you might find opportunities to streamline your flu program next year. If you’d like to read about how a nationally prominent academic medical center improved the efficiency of their high-volume influenza vaccination program, download our free case study. After all, it’s almost time to start planning your 2020 flu program.