Quality statement 1: Recall invitations

Quality statement

Children and young people who do not attend their immunisation appointment are followed up with a written recall invitation and a phone call or text message.

Rationale

Children and young people who are due to have a vaccination should receive an invitation to an appointment. If they do not attend the appointment, a written recall invitation and phone call or text message increase the likelihood that the appointment will be rebooked, and that the child or young person will be immunised.

Quality measures

Structure

a) Evidence of local arrangements to ensure that children and young people who do not attend their immunisation appointment are followed up with a written recall invitation.

Data source: Local data collection.

b) Evidence of local arrangements to ensure that children and young people who do not attend their immunisation appointment are followed up with a phone call or text message.

Data source: Local data collection.

Process

a) Proportion of children and young people who do not attend their immunisation appointment who are followed up with a written recall invitation.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who are followed up with a written recall invitation.

Denominator – the number of children and young people who do not attend an immunisation appointment.

Data source: Local data collection.

b) Proportion of children and young people who do not attend their immunisation appointment who are followed up with a phone call or text message.

Numerator – the number in the denominator who are followed up with a phone call or text message.

Denominator – the number of children and young people who do not attend an immunisation appointment.

Data source: Local data collection.

Outcome

Immunisation after a recall invitation in under 19s.

Data source: Local data collection and COVER programme.

What the quality statement means for different audiences

Service providers (for example, GP practices and school health services) ensure that systems are in place for children and young people to be followed up with a written recall invitation and a phone call or text message after a missed immunisation appointment.

Healthcare professionals (for example, health visitors, school nurses, GPs and practice nurses) ensure that they follow up children and young people who have missed an immunisation appointment with a written recall invitation and a phone call or text message. Healthcare professionals should record if parents or carers have decided not to immunise their child and the reasons for this decision.

Commissioners (for example, clinical commissioning groups and NHS England) ensure that they include in contracts and service specifications the requirement for services to make sure children and young people are followed up with a written recall invitation and a phone call or text message after a missed immunisation appointment. The child health information system (CHIS) can be used for tracking non-attendances and generating recall invitations.

Children and young people who have missed an appointment for an immunisation and, if appropriate, their parents or carers, are contacted by their health visitor, nurse or doctor to arrange another appointment.

Source guidance

Immunisations: reducing differences in uptake in under 19s (2009) NICE guideline PH21, recommendation 1

Equality and diversity considerations

Healthcare professionals should consider the literacy levels and the first language of children and young people and their families or carers when issuing recall invitations. In some cases, a telephone call may be preferable to a letter or text message.

Consideration should also be given to the best method for communicating with transient communities, such as travellers and the homeless, who do not have a permanent address and contact details.