25333 From Start to Finish: Running A Successful Large Scale Immunization Clinic

Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Columbia Hall
Lori Candela, RN, FNP-BC, CNE , Associate Professor and Chair: Psychosocial Nursing, University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Susan Brooks, MS, RN, PNP , Clinic Director- Helping Kids CLinic, Helping Kids Clinic
William Emmerling, EdD, FNP-C , Family Nurse Practitioner, Helping Kids Clinic

Background:  Helping Kids is a free clinic that provides  primary health care services, including immunizations to vulnerable pediatric populations in Southern Nevada. The clinic is run by volunteer nurse practitioners and one paid, bilingual  staff member. The need for services is great: Nevada ranks 13th in the country for children living in poverty; 18% of children are uninsured. Unfortunately, the state ranks 47th in the nation for number of children fully immunized. In order to increase the immunization rates of children in Southern Nevada, the clinic has established multiple community partnerships.

Setting:  Immunization clinic sites vary and include department stores, school auditoriums, recreation centers, and fire departments.

Population:  The clinic serves a very diverse population; approximately 80% Hispanic;, 12% African American; 3% Asian; and 5% Caucasian. The clinic has provided up to 3,000 immunizations/ week at locations across the community. One stop alone provides immunizations for up to 700 infants, children, and adolescence.

Project Description:  A description of the steps involved in running a large scale mobile clinic will be given including initial contacts to determine need, how vaccines and supplies are obtained, finding and working with volunteers to assure a smooth process, safety checks before, during, and after clinics, and entering immunizations into the state data base. 

Results/Lessons Learned:  In just four years, Helping Kids Clinic has provided care to 27,600 patients and administered 40,800 immunizations. Next to state-run agencies, the clinic is now the largest provider of immunizations in the state. One of the biggest lessons learned is how to keep safety at a maximum while moving large crowds through the clinic by the use of four safety" check points". The need for organization and pre-planning for large scale immunization clinics is imperative so that patients, families, and staff experience a smooth process from start to finish.