One health care organization has taken their flu vaccination efforts to the next level, by vaccinating the majority of its 12,000 employees for the second year in a row, during a 1-day event called #HitMeWithYourFluShot.1 The program annually reaches more than 90% of employees with vaccinations.

ChristianaCare vaccinated 8035 employees across 4 states and 100 locations during this year's 6-hour event, and participation beat last year’s record of 7868 vaccinations.1

Marci Drees, MD, MS, FACP, DTMH, infection prevention officer and hospital epidemiologist for ChristianaCare, said in an interview with Pharmacy Times® that it has taken several years to build the successful vaccination program.

“We had kind of always done what most hospitals did—which was you make the flu vaccine available, you give it for free, and you put out information,” Drees said.

Under this model, Drees said they hovered around a 60% participation rate, not including employees who received their flu vaccine at from outside pharmacists or physicians. Drees added, however, that not only did they want to make the vaccines available, but to reach a secondary goal for holding people accountable for receiving them.

To that aim, the company implemented a tracking system to verify which employees had received the vaccines, added a tag on employee ID badges to illustrate that they had received the vaccine, and required employees who were not vaccinated to wear face masks during flu season.

Drees said the support from senior levels of the company has been vital.

“The only thing that makes this possible is that we have support from the highest leadership,” Drees said.

Like last year’s event, flu vaccination stations operated at ChristianaCare’s 2 hospital campuses in Newark and Wilmington, Delaware. At the more than 100 satellite locations in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and New Jersey, roving teams delivered vaccination kits or administered vaccines.1 This year also featured a new drive-through option at the Newark campus, which allowed employees who were not working that day to stop by and get vaccinated without ever leaving their car.1

Efficiency during the event was improved with preregistration forms distributed in the weeks leading up to the event.1

According to the CDC, everyone age 6 months and older should receive the annual flu vaccine with rare exceptions. During the 2016-2017 flu season, it is estimated that flu vaccinations prevented 85,000 flu-related hospitalizations.2

“By vaccinating so many of our caregivers in a single day, we protect our employees, our patients, and our community from influenza,” Drees said in a statement.1 “We also lead by example, demonstrating the importance that everyone gets an annual flu vaccination.”


REFERENCES
  1. ChristianaCare Vaccinates 8.035 Employees in 4 States in 100 Locations from the Flu through #HitMeWithYourFluShot [news release]. Wilmington, Del; Oct. 23, 2019: ChristianaCare Website. news.christianacare.org/pressrelease/christianacare-vaccinates-8035-employees-in-4-states-in-100-locations-from-the-flu-through-hitmewithyourflushot/. Accessed October 23, 2019.
  2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Key Facts About Seasonal Flu Vaccine. CDC Website. cdc.gov/flu/prevent/keyfacts.htm. Accessed October 23, 2019.