While some vaccines require one shot, or a couple of shots over a few weeks, the HPV vaccine requires three shots over a six-month period. Currently, the controversial HPV vaccine has the lowest completion rates of any vaccine, but EHR prompts are helping to close this gap.
A new study published in the Journal of American Board of Family Medicine shows that patients ages 9 to 18 were three times more likely to start the series of HPV vaccines and an impressive 10 times more likely to complete the vaccines if their health care provider scheduled patient reminders into their EHR system.
The EHR reminder is set up by the physician, and when the next vaccine is due, the system alters the physician so that a call can be made to the patient that it is time to come in again.
According to U of M Health, even when looking at patients ages 19 to 26, abandonment rates significantly decreased with these same reminders. Patients in this age group were six times more likely to start the series of vaccines, and eight times more likely to complete them.
Currently, HPV is responsible for all forms of cervical cancer—meaning that completing the series of vaccines can save lives.