As a pharmacist, you must place your patients’ health at the forefront of everything you do. Aside from giving them the right medication and facilitating their vaccines, you also need to maintain and update their immunization records. Keeping track of this information enables you to report any adverse side effects that might occur, educate your patients on the importance of vaccines, and communicate with other healthcare providers about your patients’ health.
EMR integration solutions like Iron Bridge Pub Hub 2.0 make it easier than ever to manage immunization records and report them to state registries. Let’s take a closer look at the role pharmacists play in managing vaccines and how Pub Hub 2.0 can help them.
Why You Need to Integrate Your Immunization Registry with Your EHR System
EMR integration with an immunization registry can save you a ton of time and energy
Most people have received a vaccine at some point in their life. For instance, vaccines against Hepatitis B, Polio, Rotavirus, and Diphtheria are especially important for babies. As a result, there is a decent chance that you have an immunization record yourself. These records are typically required to enroll in school, start a job, and travel to certain countries.
Normally, you would contact your primary care physician’s office for your immunization records. However, some clinics may only keep immunization records for a few years. You could contact your school or state health department to see if they have your vaccine records. However, tracking records from numerous sources can be tedious and time-consuming. This is where the benefits of EMR integration comes in.
How EMR Integration Can Make Your Life Easier
Nowadays, patients and healthcare providers rely on electronic health records (EHRs) to ensure that immunization records are accurate and complete. If any records are missing or incomplete, the system will alert the healthcare provider. Because EHRs are stored electronically in one location, they can be accessed easily by both patients and physicians.
How Pharmacists Can Improve Vaccination Rates with EHRs
As a pharmacist, you can use your EHR as a tool to improve vaccination rates in your patients. For instance, you can:
- Generate a list of patients who need a particular vaccination
- Create query-based reports
- Set up notifications to remind patients to get their vaccinations
- Send appointment reminders
- Identify patients who haven’t received a certain vaccine yet
Using an IIS Registry
Physicians and pharmacists also use immunization Information Systems (IIS). Participants record all immunization doses in the IIS for residents who live in a particular area. Like EHRs, IIS gather vaccine records from different sources before consolidating them. No longer do patients have to hunt down records from separate healthcare providers, like their primary care doctor, OBGYN, and school.
These confidential records can be used at both the point of clinical care and the population level. On the first level, physicians can determine whether their patients are missing any vaccinations. IIS can also help healthcare providers determine when a vaccine is needed. On the population level, healthcare providers can help improve vaccination rates and reduce vaccine-preventable diseases.
Patients can rest assured that their immunization and health information is kept confidential in these systems. Under the CDC guidelines, IIS must notify parents/patients of their existence, obtain their permission to participate, and clearly define who has access to it. They must also determine penalties if a breach of confidentiality occurs.
Pub Hub 2.0
Improve your EMR integration and Registry Reporting with the Pub Hub 2.0 by Iron Bridge
When it comes to managing public health, immunization registries play a key role in tracking vaccines and improving immunization rates across the country. Pub Hub 2.0 solution is connected to every state immunization and electronic lab registry in the country. For the state immunization registries, Pub Hub facilitates vaccine submission and query. For electronic lab result reporting, Pub Hub can report all reportable conditions and specifically COVID-19.
The system’s key features include:
- A simple API for integrating records into existing workflows
- Quick enrollment services
- Compliance with meaningful use requirements
- ONC Certified
- Connect once to report to many registries
- Instant Reporting
Pharmacy Immunization Reporting Challenges
Traditionally, pharmacists and other healthcare organizations encountered high costs and complex processes when reporting immunizations among patients. For one thing, registries from different states tend to vary from one another. Many of them have differing security requirements and varying HL7 VXU/QBP/RSP specifications. They also typically use different transport mechanisms, such as SFTP or HTTP. All of these factors can drive up operational costs.
The Pub Hub 2.0 connects all of these registries in one, streamlined application. By standardizing these registries, Pub Hub 2.0 makes it possible to integrate any immunization standard into consistent JSON or FHIR API.
Does your organization need a new EMR integration solution? With Pub Hub, our pharmacy partners can connect to us one way and have access to all of the registries. Our solution includes a commercialized pharmacy location enrollment process, portal, and a modern API that makes connecting, submitting, and querying simple for thousands of pharmacies at scale. For more information on this cutting-edge solution, contact the team at Iron Bridge today!