COVID-19 vaccination may be off to a slow start, but soon supply levels will rise and processes will be streamlined. Thoughtfully designed outreach with well-crafted messages will be of the utmost importance to ensure enough people are vaccinated to put us on the path to population immunity and long-term protection from the disease. As decision-makers plan and implement vaccination campaigns, understanding the risk of death (mortality) from COVID-19 and potential barriers to vaccine uptake by ZIP code will be valuable in building effective communication and outreach plans in each community.
COVID-19 vaccination may be off to a slow start, but soon supply levels will rise and processes will be streamlined. Thoughtfully designed outreach with well-crafted messages will be of the utmost importance to ensure enough people are vaccinated to pave the way to population immunity and long-term protection from the disease.
Staff at UW Health and the University of Wisconsin Health Innovation Program have developed an algorithm that can be used to improve the equity of the distribution of COVID-19 vaccinations to healthcare personnel during Phase 1a of the CDC’s vaccine distribution plan, if not enough vaccine is available to immunize an entire group of employees with similar job-related risk exposure. The COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization Tool ranks health care personnel with similar job-related risk exposure by risk of mortality to COVID-19 according to SVI and age.
This tool is intended for healthcare administrators, policymakers, and researchers interested in equitably distributing vaccinations to healthcare personnel.
We are pleased to announce the pilot launch of the UW ICTR Neighborhood Health Partnerships Program (NHP).
Finding timely and accurate local health data – health information at the sub-county level - is a challenge we all face when prioritizing, scoping, implementing and evaluating health and health equity work. Health information is often only available at the county level or higher. Neighborhoods within counties are heterogeneous, and sub-county data can offer insight into patterns of health inequities and help identify local factors that can promote health and well-being.
Health Innovation Program partnered with the Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality, the University of Wisconsin Institute for Clinical and Translational Research (ICTR), and the ICTR Neighborhood Health Partnerships Program to feature three posters at the Wisconsin Public Health Association Virtual Public Health Conference. Check out more information about each poster below:
HIP Investigator, Dr. Yao Liu assisted in the development of the Telehealth Resources for Eye Care During COVID-19, a Resource from the Ocular Telehealth Special Interest Group (SIG). The document consists of resources that can assist eye care providers in the rapid transition to telehealth for providing necessary eye care while reducing risks to patients and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The resource document includes sections on AAO resources on billing/coding, checking vision, innovative strategies, audio telehealth, video telehealth, and documentation.
With the onset of COVID-19, primary care systems across the country are rapidly changing clinical operations to limit in-person ambulatory visits for infection-control reasons. The Primary care Academics Transforming Healthcare (PATH) collaborative quickly redesigned primary care in their institution to introduce telemedicine visits as a practical alternative to provide needed care remotely. The innovation was the rapid development and implementation of workflows to standardize billable telemedicine visits in the primary care setting.
UW Researchers Provide Health Systems with Information to Plan for Severe Complications from COVID-19
With the onset of COVID-19, the Health Innovation Program (HIP) determined they could use the reporting infrastructure they have been developing over the last several years, in partnership with Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality (WCHQ), to rapidly produce reports with reliable and accurate data for health systems who are WCHQ members. These reports can help the health systems to prepare for and respond to this pandemic.
The reports provide details on primary care provider panels, clinics, and ZIP codes for each health system and helps the health system to identify the numbers and prevalence of people who are at risk for severe complications from COVID-19.
UW Researchers Provide Health Decision Makers with Information to Plan for Severe Complications from COVID-19 by Zip Code, Health Conditions
With the COVID-19 pandemic, UW-Madison researchers within the School of Medicine and Public Health are quickly adapting to support Wisconsin health officials. Researchers at the Health Innovation Program (HIP), who have been working to improve health care using electronic health record data voluntarily provided by over 20 Wisconsin health systems through the Wisconsin Collaborative for Healthcare Quality (WCHQ), have mobilized to determine how they could rapidly use these data to help those on the front line of the battle against COVID-19 to support the direction of efforts towards the places in Wisconsin that need it most.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, critically ill patients have been hospitalized and isolated from their families and loved ones. In many hospitals, the palliative care team has been charged with maintaining communication between the critical care team and their patients’ families. Dr. Gretchen Schwarze and her team along with Dr. Toby Campbell created the Best Case/Worst Case: ICU (COVID-19) communication toolkit to assist separated families and to help them develop an understanding of their loved one’s illness, prognostic awareness and the range of possible outcomes.