CORHIO Connects Practices to Vital Immunization DataDate: July 14th, 2021Category: CORHIO e-NewsletterTopics: EHRs, Health IT, Immunizations, COVID-19, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
Clinica Family Health becomes first FQHC in Colorado to query immunization information system through CORHIO connection
CORHIO has a long-standing partnership with Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and the two organizations work together to streamline immunization reporting and data access for Colorado providers.
Clinica Family Health recently worked with CORHIO to become the first Federally Qualified Health Center (FQHC) in Colorado to query CIIS from its electronic health record (EHR), through CORHIO’s CIIS Query hub.
A program of the CDPHE, Colorado Immunization Information System (CIIS), is a confidential, population-based tracking system that collects and consolidates vaccination data of Coloradans from a variety of sources.
What is the CIIS query?
For several years, CDPHE has collaborated with CORHIO on an interface that lets medical practices electronically send immunization data through the health information exchange (HIE). This functionality has been expanded to include immunization queries from an electronic health record (EHR) via a CORHIO interface. CORHIO helps providers implement and test this application to ensure that it works for them.
The CIIS query recently generated increased interest because of requirements from the Centers of Disease Control to report vaccine information during the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccines. On the reverse side, practices needed to know if patients already received a vaccine to avoid duplication or to forecast what immunizations are needed.
Why Clinica came onboard
Clinica Family Health has provided culturally appropriate, preventative medical care for more than 40 years. The FQHC offers a safety net for people who otherwise might fall through the cracks of the healthcare system.
Established in 1977 with two doctors in a small-frame house in Lafayette, the FQHC now serves over 58,000 patients a year, employing 640 people in six community-based medical clinics in Boulder, Broomfield and west Adams County.
Tonatiuh Dansie, Director of EHR Systems and Applications development for Clinica Family Health, says the CIIS Query Hub will free up some of the FQHC’s busiest roles from having to perform manual vaccination reconciliation allowing them to focus their energy on the actual administration of vaccines.
“This will increase their efficiency, reduce data entry errors and ensure that we are using a global source of truth for historically administered vaccines. This functionality ultimately improves patient care through the single click of a button inside of our EHR,” Dansie said.
Clinica’s sometimes transient patient population can make it difficult to keep current with immunization records, said Abigail Miranda, a Medical Assistant at Clinica Family Health’s location in Lafayette. Miranda is the often the first point of contact for the location’s patients. She draws blood, takes vital signs and gets the information needed to prepare for a visit with a physician or a nurse practitioner.
Before the installation, medical assistants had to log directly into the CIIS website to locate immunization. Now with the implementation, the vaccination updates automatically flow into Clinica’s dashboard charts for patients who’ve had vaccinations in the state from participating practices.
Miranda noted that the function is in line with Clinica Family Center’s mission to provide quality, continuous healthcare to its patients.
“A lot of low-income families have to leave their homes quickly and they could lose all of their information including vaccine history, so it’s really helpful to have this tool to look up their record online,” she added.
In implementing the CIIS Query hub, Dansie said CORHIO partnered with Clinica’s project management team and held weekly meetings to ensure that they were always on the same page and to keep the project moving.
“Once we had validated the functionality in our test environment, the switch over to production was incredibly easy and seamless,” Dansie said. “I am very excited that we now have this functionality in place and look forward to partnering with CORHIO in the future.”
In addition to Clinica Family Health, CORHIO has completed several large-scale implementations including Centura Health, UCHealth and Boulder Medical Center. About 10 other practices are waiting in the queue for the CIIS query. CORHIO provides assistance with the implementations free of charge because the public health input is so critical.
Contact CORHIO Outreach at Info@CORHIO.org to learn more about the CIIS Query hub.