COVID-19 Immunization Resources

For any patients you are already seeing, assess and give them all the vaccines they need. 

AAP issues guidance to ensure continued care for children during pandemic (AAP, 2020)

If community circumstances require limiting in-person visits, the guidance urges pediatricians to:

  • Primary care pediatricians are prepared to ensure all newborns, infants, children and adolescents are up to date on their comprehensive well-child care, inclusive of appropriate screenings, complete physical exam, laboratory exams, fluoride varnish and vaccines. 
  • Consistent with previous guidance, all well-child care should occur in person whenever possible and within the child’s medical home where continuity of care may be established and maintained.  For practices who have successfully implemented telehealth to provide appropriate elements of the well exam virtually, these telehealth visits should continue to be supported, followed by a timely in-person visit. 
  • Pediatricians should identify children who have missed well-child visits and/or recommended vaccinations and contact them to schedule in person appointments inclusive of newborns, infants, children, and adolescents. Pediatricians should work with families to bring children up to date as quickly as possible. State-based immunization information systems and electronic health records may be able to support any catch-up immunizations. 
  • Pediatricians should also inform families about the strategies already implemented in primary care medical home offices to assure safety. These strategies may include these examples: 
    • Scheduling well visits and sick visits at different times of the day. 
    • Separating patients spatially, such as by placing patients with sick visits in different areas of the primary care clinic or another location from patients with well visits. 
    • Collaborating with providers in the community to identify separate locations for providing well visits for children.  

Maintaining Childhood Immunizations During COVID-19 Pandemic (CDC, 2020)

The COVID-19 pandemic is changing rapidly and continues to affect communities across the United States differently. Some of the strategies used to slow the spread of disease in communities include postponing or cancelling non-urgent elective procedures and using telemedicine instead of face-to-face encounters for routine medical visits.

Ensuring the delivery of newborn and well-child care, including childhood immunization, requires different strategies. Healthcare providers in communities affected by COVID-19 are using strategies to separate well visits from sick visits. Examples include:

  • Scheduling well visits in the morning and sick visits in the afternoon
  • Separating patients spatially, such as by placing patients with sick visits in different areas of the clinic or another location from patients with well visits.
  • Collaborating with providers in the community to identify separate locations for holding well visits for children.

Because of personal, practice, or community circumstances related to COVID-19, some providers may not be able to provide well child visits, including provision of  immunizations, for all patients in their practice. If a practice can provide only limited well child visits, healthcare providers are encouraged to prioritize newborn care and vaccination of infants and young children (through 24 months of age) when possible. CDC is monitoring the situation and will continue to provide guidance.

Additional Resource: NASHP Briefing Document: Staying Up-to-Date with Childhood Immunizations

Maintaining Adult Immunizations During COVID-19 Pandemic (CDC, 2020)

The COVID-19 pandemic is changing rapidly and is affecting communities across the United States in different ways. Despite changing circumstances, clinicians must continue to provide their patients with access to clinical services in environments that are safe for all. Some strategies  used to slow the spread of disease in communities include postponing or cancelling non-urgent elective procedures and using telemedicine instead of face-to-face encounters for routine medical encounters. Delivery of some clinical preventive services, such as immunizations, requires face-to-face encounters. In areas with community transmission of COVID-19, these visits should be postponed except when:

  • An in-person visit must be scheduled for some other purpose and the clinical preventive service can be delivered during that visit with no additional risk; or
  • An individual patient and their clinician believe that there is a compelling need to receive the service based on an assessment that the potential benefit outweighs the risk of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • View CDC’s 6/25/2020 Updated Guidance on how to Increase Vaccination Rates during COVID-19 Pandemic- Webinar

Sample Social Media Graphics to Download & Share

Keep up with vaccinations instagram
Keep your child vaccinated instagram
Our first priority is your family's health instagram
We are here for you instagram
Well child care is important instagram
Well child care is important postcard
Our office is open postcard
  • Click here for graphics on maintaining immunizations and well care suitable for Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, & other social media. 
  • Click here for a ready to print postcard for patient/family outreach on the importance of maintaining immunizations.

Resources

Communications:

Helpful Hint From the Field

The PA Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics had a webinar on 3/25/2020 on telehealth. A participant shared a helpful bit of information particularly relevant to immunization. She said that one of the ways they are using telemedicine is to reassure parents whose kids are due for well visits that include immunizations and who are scared to bring their currently healthy kid into the office, that they can do most of the visit via video/audio, and just need to bring the kid in for a quick weight, height, brief physical, and immunizations – all the rest can be done at home with telehealth. This has proven to be very reassuring to parents – that they can really minimize the time they spend in the clinical office perhaps being exposed to covid-19.

View PA AAP’s webinar, “Implementing Telemedicine in Pediatric Practice” here.