Industry News

Vaccines Aren’t Just for Kids

08/30/17

Philadelphia, July 31, 2017—To encourage adults to get vaccinated and to remind internists to make sure their patients are up-to-date on the latest recommended adult immunization schedule, the American College of Physicians (ACP) recognizes August as National Immunization Awareness Month.

“All adults should get recommended vaccines to guard against serious health problems,” said Jack Ende, MD, MACP, president, ACP. “Internal medicine physicians should assess their patients’ vaccination needs at each office visit.”

ACP advises adults to get an annual flu vaccine with either the inactivated influenza vaccine or recombinant influenza vaccine to protect against seasonal flu and to use that opportunity to discuss with their internist other vaccinations they might need. These include Tdap to protect against tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (whooping cough); pneumococcal to protect against pneumococcal pneumonia, bacteremia, and meningitis; HPV to prevent cervical, anal, and other cancers; Hepatitis B; and herpes zoster to help prevent shingles. Each of these vaccines should be administered according to guidelines for dosing and schedules.

The latest adult immunization schedule and recommendations approved by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) is published in Annals of Internal Medicine. ACP and other professional organizations reviewed and approved the schedule. In June 2017, ACIP reiterated that the quadrivalent live attenuated influenza vaccine, also known as the “nasal spray” flu vaccine, should not be used in any setting during the upcoming flu season. ACIP’s recommendation must be reviewed and approved by the CDC director. The final recommendation will be published in an upcoming Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

“Vaccinations are safe and not only protect the person receiving the vaccine but also help prevent the spread of disease, especially to those who are most vulnerable to serious complications, such as the elderly and those with chronic conditions and weakened immune systems,” Dr. Ende said.

ACP offers the following resources to help increase immunization rates:

  • Immunization patient-education materials.
  • ACP’s I Raise the Rates initiative to increase adult immunization rates in primary care. The initiative includes webinars and videos that cover the latest vaccine recommendations for adults and how to utilize the entire health care team in organizing immunization services. An extension of I Raise the Rates is a partnership of ACP, the National Minority Quality Forum, and QHC Advisory Group to increase adult immunization rates among underserved populations.
  • Examples of quality improvement projects in adult immunization.
  • The ACP Practice Advisor Adult Immunization Module is part of a practice management tool designed to improve office efficiency and enhance patient care. The immunization module focuses on steps that staff in primary care offices can take to improve the rates of immunization.
  • ACP Adult Immunization & Quality Improvement for Residents training program about the science of adult immunizations and evidence-based strategies for increasing vaccination rates.

ACP is a member of the Campaign for Adult Immunization, an initiative of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases to ensure that all adults are fully aware of and have access to appropriate immunizations.

About the American College of Physicians

The American College of Physicians is the largest medical specialty organization in the United States with members in more than 145 countries worldwide. ACP membership includes 152,000 internal medicine physicians (internists), related subspecialists, and medical students. Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment, and compassionate care of adults across the spectrum from health to complex illness. Follow ACP on Twitter and Facebook.


Coding and Billing for Adult Vaccinations

07/13/17

In May, the National Adult and Influenza Immunization Summit posted Coding and Billing for Adult Vaccinations on its website. A summary from the web section is reprinted below.

A common problem that has been expressed by providers of adult vaccinations has been the intricacies and complexities associated with coding and billing for those services. Much discussion at meetings of the National Adult and Influenza Immunization Summit (“Summit”) has focused on opportunities to provide information to providers to reduce the errors and confusion associated with coding and billing for adult vaccines. The Summit’s Access and Provider Workgroup has developed this website in response to this identified need.

Acquired from http://www.immunize.org/express/issue1315.asp on 7/13/17. We thank the Immunization Action Coalition.


Provider Resources for Vaccine Conversations with Parents

06/09/17

Many parents have questions about their children’s vaccines, and answering their questions can help parents feel confident in choosing to immunize their child according to the CDC’s recommended immunization schedule. CDC, The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and The American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) created Provider Resources for Vaccine Conversations with Parents to help healthcare professionals assess parents’ needs, identify the role they want to play in making decisions for their child’s health, and then communicate in ways that meet their needs.

These resources are intended to help health care professionals start or continue conversations with parents. They include proven communication strategies and tips for effectively addressing questions from parents, fact sheets on vaccine-preventable diseases and vaccine safety, as well as information for parents who choose not to vaccinate. There is also a video featuring a CDC pediatrician answering tough vaccine questions and much more.

These Provider Resources are based on formative research, informed by risk communication principles, and reviewed extensively by subject matter experts.

Read Original Article on CDC Website


So far in 2017, 42 states and D.C. have reported 1,965 mumps cases; learn more

04/19/17

From January 1 to March 25, 2017, 42 U.S. states and the District of Columbia reported 1,965 mumps cases to CDC. Some information from CDC’s website follows.

Mumps is no longer very common in the United States. From year to year, mumps cases can range from roughly a couple hundred to a couple thousand. For example in 2016, there were approximately 5,748 cases reported to CDC, and in 2012, there were 229. Before the U.S. mumps vaccination program started in 1967, about 186,000 cases were reported each year, but the actual number of cases was likely much higher due to underreporting. Since the pre-vaccine era, there has been a more than 99% decrease in mumps cases in the United States….

In some years, there are more cases of mumps than usual because of outbreaks. Mumps outbreaks can occur any time of year. A major factor contributing to outbreaks is being in a crowded environment, such as attending the same class, playing on the same sports team, or living in a dormitory with a person who has mumps. Also, certain behaviors that result in exchanging saliva, such as kissing or sharing utensils, cups, lipstick or cigarettes, might increase spread of the virus.

MMR vaccine prevents most, but not all, cases of mumps and complications caused by the disease. Two doses of the vaccine are 88% (range: 66 to 95%) effective at protecting against mumps; one dose is 78% (range: 49% to 92%) effective. The MMR vaccine protects against currently circulating mumps strains. Outbreaks can still occur in highly vaccinated U.S. communities, particularly in close-contact settings. In recent years, outbreaks have occurred in schools, colleges, and camps. However, high vaccination coverage helps limit the size, duration, and spread of mumps outbreaks.

Related Links

This article is reprinted from original material provided by the Immunization Action Coalition. Content may be viewed in its original context by clicking here.


Popular slide deck for healthcare professionals on meningococcal disease prevention and how to increase second dose coverage

04/06/17

In 2015, IAC launched MCV4: You’re Not Done If You Give Just One; Give 2 Doses to Strengthen Protection, in collaboration with Sanofi Pasteur. This project was developed in response to the low immunization rates found for the recommended second (booster) dose of meningococcal ACWY (MCV4) vaccine.

As part of this project, a downloadable slide deck (with accompanying speaker notes) was added to the www.Give2MCV4.org website in 2016. This valuable resource was made available for use by healthcare professionals (HCPs) to assist them in educating HCPs about the seriousness of meningococcal disease and the risk it poses to adolescents, raise awareness of the low immunization rates for the second (booster) dose of MCV4, and offer tools and resources to help HCPs increase their immunization rates and close the meningococcal booster dose gap.

This popular slide deck was just updated to include more recent data, as well as to incorporate recently revised recommendations for HPV and meningococcal group B vaccine. The new 16-year-old immunization platform highlighted in the ACIP’s recommended immunization schedule is also mentioned in the Speaker’s Notes.

This “ready-to-use” slide deck, which may be used free of charge, is available in two convenient formats.

  • PDF version of the slides (without speaker notes)
  • PowerPoint version, which can be downloaded and used for presentations to HCPs. The slide deck may be viewed with the embedded speaker notes. (Be sure to read the “Important Notes” on the download page for assistance in how to view the speaker notes.)

To access the slide deck in either format, go to www.give2mcv4.org/essential-tools/slide-deck. Be sure to take advantage of this great training tool and the wealth of other educational resources available on the website.

Related Links

This article is reprinted from original material provided by the Immunization Action Coalition. Content may be viewed in its original context by clicking here.