City of Wauwatosa

Action Item
Recommended for approval
Jun 26, 2018 7:30 PM

Memo from Health Officer requesting approval of a multi-year contract with Pfizer and West for an immunization education campaign


Department:Health DepartmentSponsors:


  1. Printout


A.              Issue

Wauwatosa Health Department (WHD) is required by Wisconsin State Statute 252 and Administrative Codes 140 and 144 to conduct immunization services and immunization surveillance to the community.


B.              Background/Options

Currently, Wauwatosa immunization rates for two year old children is at 85% for 2017. This measurement is the number of children that have completed the following vaccination series on or before their second birthday; 4 diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTaP), 3 polio, 1 Measles-Mumps-Rubella (MMR), 3 Haemophilus type B (HiB), 3 Hepatitis B, 3 rotavirus, 2 Hepatitis A, and 1 varicella (chicken pox). The number of children that have reached this two-year old benchmark has increased each year over the last five years, up from 75% in 2013. The Healthy People 2020 (HP2020) goal for this age group is 90% so there is still work to be done to meet this public health goal.


Wauwatosa averages approximately 25 cases of hospitalized influenza each year, for 2018 the number is 63 due to a more aggressive strain of flu virus this season. WHD staff also follow-up to control and mitigate approximately 5 respiratory outbreaks a year in long term care facilities. Wauwatosa is an aging community with a large number of residents over the age of 65 and home to several large long term care facilities making a large portion of the population more susceptible to this illness than neighboring communities. Influenza vaccine rates hover around 30% for adults in Wauwatosa the HP2020 goal is 70%.


Current Activities:


Due to changes introduced with the Affordable Care Act in 2010, WHD has seen its numbers of residents receiving immunizations through our clinics drop. As a department our focus has shifted from direct immunization services toward:


-              Surveillance of immunization rates of the most vulnerable populations of young children and seniors, and

-              Providing the education necessary for residents to understand the importance of staying up to date with immunizations.


Currently, WHD receives a grant from the State to conduct benchmark surveillance of two year olds in Wauwatosa to make sure parents and pediatricians are aware of any child that may be behind on the recommended CDC and ACIP vaccine schedule. This multi-step process is outlined below.


1.              Run a report from the Wisconsin Immunization Registry (WIR) to find the number of children in Wauwatosa who are behind schedule with the recommended immunizations.

2.              A public health nurse (PHN) then determines the pediatrician of each child on the benchmark report and contacts them individually to ensure the information in the WIR is correct.

3.              For those children that still show as behind schedule after confirmation with the pediatrician, certified letters are sent to the parent/guardian to inform them of the child’s immunization status.


This process is performed quarterly and takes our staff (one PHN and two clerks) anywhere from 50-60 hours to complete.


WHD focuses on improving the immunization rates of seniors through a combination of direct immunization services and educational outreach each influenza season. Seniors are welcome to attend any of our regularly scheduled clinics or mass flu clinics each year, however much like childhood vaccines, we’ve seen a shift in more seniors getting flu shots through their health care provider or through other immunization providers at pharmacies. We focus primarily on educating the community about the importance of annual flu shots in an effort to reach as many seniors as possible and increase this immunization rate. WHD is also involved in a regional coalition with other local health departments and free clinics to improve immunization rates for adults with access to care issues.


WHD was approached by Pfizer and offered assistance with our benchmarking process as a way to improve immunization rates for children and seniors. Pfizer partners with a third party vendor, West®, to utilize the benchmark reports generated from WIR to send out reminder and recall cards to those residents who are behind on recommended vaccines. Several other local health department have utilized Pfizer’s free Vaccine Adherence in Kids and Vaccine Adherence in Adults programs, including West Allis, Cudahy, Kenosha, and Rock County to assist their community’s vulnerable populations by increasing immunization rates.


C.  Strategic Plan (Area of Focus)

Health Community


D.              Fiscal Impact

This program is free for WHD to utilize.  It will result in a cost savings of staff time, postage and the ability to devote time to other programs and services within the department.


E.              Recommendation

Staff recommends approval.

Meeting History

Jun 26, 2018 7:30 PM Video Community Affairs Committee Regular Meeting
draft Draft

Ms. Day presented the City's immunization program and how the Affordable Care Act brought changes to the administration and tracking of immunizations. The process requires many hours of time for one of the nursing staff to track children that are behind in immunizations, contact their doctors, adjust the state-wide data base if necessary, and contact parents to encourage immunizations for their children.

Pfizer Corporation contacted Wauwatosa Health Department (WHD) and introduced the Vaccine Adherence in Kids Program. Essentially Pfizer, along with their partner West, would provide the same service at no cost to the City. WHD provides the list of children's names and Pfizer does the outreach and tracking. This will allow WHD nursing staff back into the office to perform many other tasks. A three year contract, if successful, could expand to include a senior program for those residents over sixty that may require immunizations.

The Committee asked about families that move, and how are they contacted. Ms. Day replied that Pfizer has additional software with the ability to find the new address for families with children within the City. She also assured the Committee that Pfizer guarantees absolute confidentiality of the residents of the City.

It was moved by Ald. Stippich, seconded by Ald. Berdan

to recommend approval of a three year contract with Pfizer

to participate in the Vaccine Adherence in Kids Program.

Ayes: 8

MOVER:Matthew Stippich, Alderman
SECONDER:Cheryl Berdan, Alderwoman
AYES:Kathleen Causier, Tim Hanson, Joel Tilleson, Cheryl Berdan, Jason Wilke, Matthew Stippich, Michael Walsh, Kelly Rifelj