Tuesday, March 18, 2008

WIC/Immunization Linkage, Not Just for Children

Debra Laughlin and Machrina Leach. Department of Public Health, Maricopa County, 4041 Central Ave, suite 600, Phoenix, AZ, USA

Learning Objectives for this Presentation:
By the end of the presentation participants will be able to understand the methods used to increase Influenza vaccination levels for high risk population (WIC participants and household contacts).

There are 87,000 WIC participants in Maricopa County. WIC membership targets pregnant women and children birth to five who have financial need (185% federal poverty guideline) and demonstrate nutritional high risk and high risk for medical conditions. This population is considered high priority for annual Influenza vaccination. By providing the opportunity to receive the vaccine at a convenient location to the clients and their household contacts at no cost will increase the levels of Influenza vaccination in a high risk population.

WIC clinic sites.

WIC participants and household contacts.

Project Description:
Maricopa County Department of Public Health will partner with WIC, to offer at no cost to WIC participants and their household contacts Influenza vaccine at designated WIC sites. Clinics will be held after hours (up to 7:00 PM) to accommodate working families. Maricopa County has fifteen WIC sites and three sites were chosen for the pilot program. Posters were placed at all 15 sites to promote Flu clinics. Flyers were distributed by WIC staff and the WIC site with the most referrals received a pizza party by Community Health Nursing. WIC families unable to attend the scheduled flu clinics were given a referral to receive vaccine at regularly scheduled immunization clinics.

Results/Lessons Learned:
828 WIC clients and household contacts received flu vaccine during three flu clinics held at pre-determined WIC sites. WIC family referrals continue at this time.Targeting WIC families to receive Flu vaccine at their site improves influenza coverage rates for all family members.