Increasing HIV Testing Rates in Peach County, Georgia

Summary

Impact Statement: 
This health department was able to achieve a 51% improvement in HIV testing rates, which can result in identifying more people with HIV and better, more immediate treatment. In order to reduce redundancy, the QI project team eliminated one of the demographic forms that had been required, saving staff and client time during the clinic visit. Due to the high success rate of this implementation, the leadership has removed the demographic form from the HIV testing process in 13 other counties within that district.
Summary: 

For the 13 counties within the North Central Health District in Georgia, HIV Testing is a mandatory part of a routine and annual family planning visit unless the patient opts out. It is also offered as a non-mandatory option under the STD program. Thus, the HIV Program Coordinator set the expected rate of HIV testing at 80% within North Central Health District for the age group of 15-44.

During July 1 through July 31, 2014, to avoid spending time on the collection of redundant data, the Peach County Health Department tested the removal of the confidential HIV test record form. This is a consent form with demographic information that is unnecessary to collect because this information is already saved in the district's Mitchell and McCormick (M&M) database. Removal of this form was approved by program and district leadership before implementation.

Removing the demographic form increased efficiency in Peach County Health Department. Specifically, this created less work for the nursing staff and reduced the total amount of time required for a patient visit by a few minutes. These few extra minutes make a huge difference in the overall picture. Because of the high success rate of this implementation, staff have removed the demographic form from the HIV testing process in all 13 counties within the NCHD.

Organization that conducted the QI initiative: 
NCHD 5-2
Citation: 

Roberts, G. Public Health Quality Improvement Exchange. Increasing HIV Testing Rates in Peach County, Georgia. Wed, 10/11/2017 - 11:27. Available at https://www.phqix.org/content/increasing-hiv-testing-rates-peach-county-georgia. Accessed November 21, 2018.

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