A big part of good health is avoiding illness. Many serious, and sometimes fatal, illnesses are preventable through vaccination. Many of us are familiar with having our vaccinations at a younger age; however, some vaccines lose effectiveness as we age and the viruses themselves change and become more resistant to earlier vaccinations.
Premier’s primary care clinical teams are committed to achieving higher vaccination levels to better protect all of our patients. We joined other AMGA member groups and Optum, a global healthcare technology company, in a national collaborative designed to improve pneumococcal and influenza immunization rates among adults.
At the close of 2017, we were one of the top performing groups in this nationwide collaborative effort.
AMGA’s national adult immunization collaborative focuses on pneumococcal and influenza vaccination rates in adults over the age of 19. At the start in 2016, Premier used an Optum technology platform to research our adult patient records and provide real-time data of the vaccination status across our adult patients.
At Premier, there is a team-wide approach and commitment when targeting health initiatives. We share information at the national level and bring that information into Premier to further educate and train clinical team members. Our staff participated in sessions on the importance of adult pneumonia and flu vaccines and how to best engage and educate patients during at the time of each visit.
Additionally, our technological platforms made a series of phone calls to inform patients of their vaccination needs and prompted appointment scheduling.
Nationally, the US Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion has a science-based, 10-year national agenda for improving the health of Americans – Healthy People 2020. The campaign recommends vaccination rates for adults between 19-64 at 60% and for people 65 and older the goal at 90%.
Using Healthy People 2020 goals as our benchmark, our clinical teams were very successful with approximately 95% of Premier’s patients over age 65 have received the recommended pneumonia vaccines. Patients between the ages of 19 and 64 with medical conditions such as diabetes and emphysema have benefitted greatly from this effort, with an improved vaccination rate from 55% to over 70%.
Over 70% of our adult patients received their flu vaccine in the 2016-2017 flu season; the 2017-18 season is still in progress.
Premier further tracks rates of vaccination for tetanus, pertussis, shingles and hepatitis.
Premier focuses on your best health even when you are not in our offices. We continue to participate in multiple national health initiatives to identify best practices in medical care as part of our mission of keeping our patients healthy.
Premier is considered to be one of the highest-performing members of the AMGA and a leader in higher quality preventive care.