When it comes to tracking vaccinations, most people assume their doctors have the list and will let them know what they need. But for kids entering college and older folks going back to school or traveling abroad, that list is important and may not be easily accessible, especially if they've seen several different doctors over the years.
To address this issue, students at Baylor College of Medicine, Rice University, and the University of Texas School of Public Health have developed VaxNation, an online vaccination tracker. You enter information such as your birth date, vaccinations that you've had, and the dates of those immunizations, and VaxNation provides age-appropriate recommendations based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidelines.
Families can set up joint accounts, and accounts can be linked to Facebook and Twitter so that information about immunizations can be shared. The app helps locate clinics, provides email reminders when immunizations are needed, and offers educational information.
VaxNation won first prize in the Institute of Medicine and the National Academy of Engineering's Go Viral to Improve Health collegiate challenge.