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Immunization Improvements using the HL7 Interface to the State’s Registry

Macomb County, MI
Program Year: 2016

The Macomb County Health Department (MCHD) Immunization Program provides vaccines to protect all persons in the community from vaccine-preventable diseases. Vaccines administered are entered within 24 hours into the department’s Electronic Health Record (EHR), Visual HealthNet. In 1998, the Michigan Care Improvement Registry (MCIR) was created to collect reliable immunization information for children and make the information available to authorized users. A 2006 change to the Michigan Public Health Code enabled MCIR to transition from a childhood immunization registry to a lifespan registry for persons of all ages. MCIR is only a valuable tool if immunization data is entered in a timely manner by all immunization providers. When immunization records are not current/up-to-date, there is a risk of over-vaccination, exclusion from school and errors. Direct data entry into MCIR has been followed by uploading of batch files which has improved timeliness, but still does not provide a real-time picture of a person’s immunization status. Until June 2015, MCHD had utilized daily batch files to submit immunization data to MCIR. In order to further improve timeliness and error reduction, MCHD prepared, collaborated and successfully transitioned to real time immunization data submissions to MCIR using the Health Level Seven (HL7) interface. The transition was further motivated by the federal electronic health record initiative and Meaningful Use. MCHD became the first local health department in Southeast Michigan to successfully utilize the HL7 interface.

Ms. Annette Thompson
Information Technology Program Manager