Survey Rationale

The VIIS is the Commonwealth’s statewide immunization registry; similar registries are in use in 62 jurisdictions nationwide, including all states and territories, the District of Columbia and some large cities and counties.  There is no national registry per se, but individual registries report their data to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  There is limited integration between registries and there are challenges to individual users in sharing and accessing data. 

Immunization registries were introduced in 1994, as a tool to manage the Vaccines for Children program.  Registry use in Virginia, which was voluntary in the past, has been mandated for all healthcare providers who administer vaccines, beginning in January of 2022.  Registry use remains free of charge, though providers may incur costs related to data management within their practices or businesses. Data entry is web based. 

The intent of the VIIS is to house all Virginians’ personal immunization history in a single record that is accurate, comprehensive and easily accessible: end-users include patients, healthcare providers and others with a legitimate need to know, e.g., school districts and health departments. The primary goal of the VIIS is to achieve and sustain target immunization rates, thus protecting the population to the greatest extent possible from vaccine preventable diseases. It also provides a safeguard against inadvertently duplicating immunizations, which wastes scarce healthcare resources and increases the risk of complications.

Currently, the VIIS is not utilized widely enough to realize its full potential and may not facilitate some important data analyses. Underutilization can have many causes.  This Survey seeks to better understand barriers to use encountered by key groups of healthcare providers in Virginia:  physicians, physician assistants and advance-practice nurses; pharmacists; and school nurses.  ImmunizeVA, the Commonwealth’s multi-stakeholder immunization Coalition, is distributing this survey to end-users of the VIIS with support from the Virginia Department of Health and pertinent professional organizations. 

We understand that your professional time is subject to many important demands. Our hope is that your input, provided through this brief survey, will translate directly into interventions that make the VIIS easier for healthcare providers to use and expand its analytical capacity for the Virginia Department of Health (VDH).  Such modifications can help the VIIS to more completely realize its goal – one that we all share.

Thank you for your help.