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Patient Portal Reminders for Pediatric Influenza Vaccinations: A Randomized Clinical Trial.

Lerner C, Albertin C, Casillas A, Duru OK, Ong MK, Vangala S, Humiston S, Evans S, Sloyan M, Fox CR, Bogard JE, Friedman S, Szilagyi PG. Patient Portal Reminders for Pediatric Influenza Vaccinations: A Randomized Clinical Trial. Pediatrics. 2021 Aug 1; 148(2).

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OBJECTIVES: In a large health system, we evaluated the effectiveness of electronic health record patient portal reminders in increasing pediatric influenza vaccination rates. METHODS: We conducted an intention-to-treat randomized clinical trial of 22?046 children from 6 months to < 18 years of age in 53 primary care practices. Patients (or parent and/or proxies) who were active portal users were randomly assigned to receive reminder messages framed as gains or losses or no messages. They were separately randomly assigned to receive a precommitment message before the influenza season. The primary outcome was receipt of = 1 seasonal influenza vaccinations. Additionally, children 6 months to < 3 years of age due for a second influenza vaccine were randomly assigned to receive a reminder or no reminder for the second vaccination. RESULTS: First-dose influenza vaccination rates were 56.9% in the control group, 58.0% in the loss-frame reminders group ( = .07), and 58.0% in the gain-frame group ( = .47). Rates were 58.3% in the precommitment group versus 57.0% in the control group ( = .11). Adjusted risk ratios for first vaccination were 1.02 (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.00-1.04) for loss-frame reminders, 1.01 (95% CI: 0.98-1.05) for gain-frame reminders, and 1.02 (95% CI: 1.00-1.04) for precommitment messages versus controls. Second-dose vaccination rates were 44.1% in the control group and 55.0% in the reminder group, with an adjusted risk ratio of 1.25 (95% CI: 1.07-1.45). CONCLUSIONS: Patient portal reminders for influenza vaccines in children, whether framed as gains or losses, did not increase first-dose influenza vaccination rates but were highly effective for the second dose of the vaccine.

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