Quality Improvement in Immunization Delivery Following an Unsuccessful Immunization Recall

      Objectives.—Within a clinic serving disadvantaged children, 1) to evaluate a multifaceted quality improvement (QI) project to improve immunization (IZ) up-to-date (UTD) rates and 2) to assess the efficacy of IZ reminder/recall performed following QI.
      Methods.—A year-long QI project followed by a trial of reminder/recall. QI interventions were targeted at previously identified barriers to IZ and were designed specifically to improve the efficacy of reminder/recall. QI interventions were designed to 1) increase the use of medical record releases to document IZs received elsewhere; 2) improve the accuracy of parental contact information; and 3) reduce missed opportunities by utilizing chart prompts, provider education, and provider reminders. Following QI, we conducted a randomized trial of reminder/recall.
      Results.—UTD rates for 7–11 month olds increased from 21% before the QI project to 52% after (P < .0001); rates for 12–18 month olds increased from 16% before QI to 44% after (P < .0001); 19–25 month olds 18% before to 33% after (P < .001). After QI, an average of 61 records per month were updated with IZs received elsewhere. However, the accuracy of parental contact information worsened (29% unreachable before QI vs 44% after, P < .001) and missed opportunities did not improve (8% before vs 6% after, P = not significant [NS]). A subsequent trial of reminder/recall did not increase UTD rates, with 17% of recalled children brought UTD vs 16% of controls (P = NS).
      Conclusions.—Clinic-based QI increased documented UTD rates in a disadvantaged patient population. However, IZ reminder/recall did not further increase UTD rates above the rates achieved by the QI process.


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