(HealthDay News) – Automated public health reporting of immunization data via electronic health records (EHRs) significantly improves timeliness of reporting, according to a study published in Applied Clinical Informatics.

Jacqueline Merrill, RN, MPH, DNSc, from Columbia University in New York City, and colleagues analyzed 1.7 million de-identified records submitted between January 2007–June 2011 by 217 primary care practices participating in the Primary Care Information Project, representing pre- and post-launch of automated reporting via an EHR.

The researchers found that mean submissions per day did not change. However, automated submissions of new and historical records increased by 18 and 98%, respectively. There was an increase of 3% of submissions within 14 days and an increase of 17% within two days. There was also a median three-day decrease in lag time. Documentation of eligibility decreased.

“Significant improvements in registry use and efficiency of reporting were found after launch of automated reporting via an EHR,” the authors write.

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