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Vaccination

More than every second measles infection in Germany occurs in adults – doctor's practices provide help

Fewer measles cases and higher vaccination rates in adults thanks to better consultation in the doctor's office: Intelligent software automatically alerts family doctors to recommended measles vaccinations during the health check-up of adult patients between 18 and 49 years of age. The system also points out their importance: More than half of all measles cases in Germany occur in adults. This functionality is now available to every third family practice in Germany at no additional cost.

The Standing Commission on Vaccination (STIKO) of the Robert Koch Institute recommends a vaccination for all adults born after January 1, 1970, who have only received a single MMR (measles mumps rubella) vaccine. Family doctors are also called upon to advise their patients on the subject of vaccinations as part of the annual health check-up recommended from the age of 18. Users of the doctor information systems CGM ALBIS, CGM M1 PRO, CGM MEDISTAR and CGM TURBOMED have been automatically notified of a vaccination since July 1 if certain criteria are met.

"Based on the data stored in the doctor's software, the system automatically displays a message during the health check if the patient is suitable for measles vaccination," explains Dr. Wolfgang Schneider-Rathert. The general practitioner from Braunschweig is also the spokesman for the working group on vaccinations of the German Society for General Medicine and has developed the highly complex procedure on a voluntary basis, which ensures that the doctor's information system does not simply issue an indiscriminate warning: "This helps us ensure that the population is vaccinated in the foreseeable future," explains the family doctor. At the same time, doctors are not annoyed by any unnecessary information.

In order to be able to optimally advise their patients, doctors are shown STIKO's recommendations on the screen and, on request, further information that underlines the importance of measles vaccination for adults. "Only those who get the right information at the right time can make well-founded decisions," emphasizes Dr. Schneider-Rathert. The general practitioner worked closely with the software manufacturer CompuGroup Medical (CGM) during development. With its doctor information systems, the Koblenz-based company, one of the world's leading providers of eHealth solutions, reaches about every third family doctor in Germany.

"Due to the very high primary vaccination rates in children, there are not sufficient anti-vaxers to endanger herd immunity," says Arne Westphal, Corporate Vice President of HIS at CompuGroup Medical. The situation is different for adults – and targeted information can support this: "Through our joint project, we are helping to ensure that everyone who wants to be vaccinated can do so thanks to the better information. Those who do not want to be vaccinated after being appropriately informed will also benefit because mandatory vaccination is no longer necessary thanks to higher vaccination rates in the overall population.

Here, a doctor could contribute his medical knowledge and we as CGM our technical expertisefor the benefit of the citizens. Instead of relying on mandatory vaccinations, we are working together – as the German Society for General Medicine and the Ethics Council are calling for – on more reliable information and better counseling

Frank Gotthardt
Chairman and CEO, CompuGroup Medical SE & Co. KGaA