Getting preventative screening tests and immunizations during regular checkups is a vital part of preventing disease and maintaining healthy living. Routine examinations and screening tests increase the opportunity to detect problems before they get out of hand, and decrease morbidity and mortality rates.
Immunization is an effective method for preventing the development of and reducing mortality from infectious diseases. Medicare covers the cost of both influenza and pneumococcal pneumonia immunizations.
Influenza-related illnesses kill around 36,000 Americans every year. Most of these deaths occur among seniors. Mountain-Pacific has worked in collaboration with state agencies, public health nurses and physician offices on projects dedicated to increasing the number of people getting flu shots each year. We have also developed statewide campaigns to educate the public, specifically seniors, about the importance of annual flu shots.
Mountain-Pacific works with a group of physician offices that use electronic health records by showing them how to use the full capabilities of their electronic records to ensure their patients are receiving the immunizations they need.
Pneumonia is the leading cause of vaccine-preventable death in the United States. Combined with the flu, pneumonia is the fifth-leading cause of death in the U.S.
Usually, only one dose of the vaccine is necessary for adults. But people may need a second dose if they are over the age of 65 and more than 5 years have passed since they received the vaccine.
Breast cancer is the second leading cause of death from cancers in American women. One in eight women will get breast cancer in her lifetime. Mountain-Pacific has long been an advocate in the fight against breast cancer. We have worked directly with physicians and have reached out to women through campaigns that stress the importance of early detection and treatment through monthly breast self-exams, yearly clinical breast exams and annual mammograms. We continue efforts in this area by working with EHR-enabled physicians to help them better use their electronic health records to improve patient care.
Colorectal cancer screening
Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer (excluding skin cancers), diagnosed in both men and women in the United States. Overall, the lifetime risk for developing colorectal cancer is about 1 in 19. This risk is slightly higher in men than in women.
Over the past two decades, the death rate from colorectal cancer has been dropping. One reason for this is that screening detects polyps, which can be removed before they develop into cancers. Colorectal cancer screening is also finding these cancers earlier when the disease is easier to cure. Mountain-Pacific works with a group of physician offices to help them use the full capabilities of their electronic health record systems in order to better monitor and improve colorectal cancer screening rates.