Increasing Measles, Mumps, and Rubella Immunization Rates in Pediatric Patients in a Rural Minnesota Clinic
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Background: Despite the preventative efforts, measles outbreaks continue to occur, and most commonly in under-immunized communities. There have been recent outbreaks in Minnesota, with many cases in both the Somali and unvaccinated populations. Willmar, MN, with a notable Somali population, also had a drop in measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) immunizations. The purpose of this quality improvement project was to increase MMR vaccination rates in children ages 24 to 35 months at the Carris Health Clinic in Willmar, Minnesota with interventions targeted at both patients and providers, while also better understanding specific barriers and potential interventions for this clinic.|Methods: The 13-week project consisted of five different interventions including: assessing providers’ perceptions of MMR vaccination barriers, completing provider education, educating parents before all one-year well-child appointments, completing data collection forms on all 1- to 3-year-olds seen in the clinic, and assessing provider perception of the project.|Results: Provider survey found more patient barriers were perceived then provider barriers, with inaccurate information and the impact of outside sources noted as a barrier by all providers. The Somali population was of concern to the providers, but unfortunately no Somali patients were seen throughout the study. Although parents who received pre-appointment MMR education refused vaccination, providers would like to continue to provide education in this format. Overall, providers felt the project helped to recognize MMR vaccination barriers.|Conclusion: The clinic’s MMR vaccination rate did increase at the project’s completion. Further research can continue to assess the impact of pre-appointment education, and could include interventions focusing on barriers noted by providers, such as community health initiatives, especially with recent low appointment attendance.
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