25475 2010 School-Based Influenza Clinics In New Hampshire

Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Columbia Hall
Marcella Bobinsky, MPH , Program Manager, New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services
Tim O'Brien, BA , National Sales Account Manager, Mollen Immunization Clinics, LLC

Background: In February 2008 ACIP (Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices) expanded the recommendation for Influenza vaccination to include all children (6 months-18 years).  Immunization rates among school age children in NH were less than 50% even during the 2009 H1N1 pandemic.  To increase uptake of influenza vaccine in this population the NH Immunization Program (NHIP) implemented a pilot project during the 2010/2011 Influenza season: School based clinics.

Setting: NH is divided into 15 Public Health Regions (PHR) that are currently used mostly for emergency preparedness coordination.  Using American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds, the Immunization Initiative was trialed in six PHR, offering additional capacity.

Population: The six PHR enroll 58,708 students in public and private, non-residential, schools.  The PHR are considered mostly rural to sparsely populated.

Project Description: The NHIP approached the school district superintendents in the 6 PHR and encouraged participation in the project.  The vaccines were provided by NHIP free of charge.  A community vaccinator was contracted to run the clinics and the first clinic was offered November 8.  Parents were approached through the schools and registered on-line or through paper registration.  Insurance, when available, was billed for administration fees.  Primary care providers were notified of vaccinations. Schools were asked to complete an evaluation after the clinics were conducted.

Results/Lessons Learned: The pilot project is currently in progress with 91% school district participation with clinics in 112 schools. To date, 2494 students were vaccinated (7.9%) and 47 evaluation forms collected. In addition to the final project results, by March 2011 further data will be available:  School absenteeism within the participating PHR compared to those that did not; CDC's 2010/11 Seasonal Influenza Survey (with over-sampling in 5 of th 6 participating PHR); Cost/benefit analysis of conducting rural school-based clinics (by the contractor).