25599 Shots Immunization Software -- What's New

Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Columbia Hall
Richard Kent Zimmerman, MD, MPH, MA , Professor, University of Pittsburgh

Background: Shots immunization software was first published by the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine in 2001 as a tool for keeping physicians up-to-date on immunization recommendations. In its early years the program was extremely popular with Palm and PocketPC users.  During the height of its popularity there were approximately 45,000 downloads per year.  In recent years smartphones have exploded onto the scene.  Programs were developed for smartphones. The new iPhone application was downloaded over 15,000 times in its first three months.  A mobile web application and Shots On-line for PCs each have approximately 2,500 page views per month.  Shots has been an excellent resource for clinicians.

Setting: Shots can be used as an educational tool or as a point-of-care reference.  It can be downloaded directly to iPhone/iPod and Android devices or it can be accessed via an internet connection on smartphones and PCs.

Population: Clinicians who administer vaccines, including: physicians, physicians assistants, nurses, nurse practitioners, and pharmacists.  May also be used as an educational tool by educators.

Project Description: Shots contains the childhood, adolescent, catch-up, adult, and medical immunization schedules for the United States. Important information is available for each vaccine, including: basics, high risk indications, adverse reactions, contraindications, catch-up, administration, epidemiology, brand names, and adjuvants. Shots software is updated 2-3 times per year when new vaccines become available and new recommendations are made.  The goal of the project is to make the information in Shots easily accessible to all clinicians.

Results/Lessons Learned:  Smartphone and other mobile web technology is changing rapidly.  While these advances make it easier for users to access information, it is becoming more difficult to keep the Shots app compatible with the many new devices.  It is also important to keep up with new methods of disseminating information such as social marketing.