Immunizations and Meaningful Use in Louisiana

LINKS Immunization NetworkLouisiana Immunization Network for Kids (LINKS)

LINKS is a real-time electronic system that receives and stores immunization records of all types regardless of the age of patient. The Network is available to all immunization providers in the state and also provides vaccine inventory management services. LINKS does accept HL7 vaccination records as required by CEHRT for purposes of meaningful use (MU).

Data Exchange Options

The following options are available for electronic data exchange with LINKS:

  1. Provider's system to LINKS (Unidirectional)
    • Sends immunization data from the provider's EHR or other system to LINKS
    • HL7 (real time or batch)
  2. Data exchange with LINKS and Provider EHR (Bidirectional)
    • Real Time Query
    • Newly registered patients sent to LINKS
    • LINKS sends updates for all changes in LINKS (Initiated by provider system

LINKS sends and receives HL7 immunization queries and updates which conform to HL7 specification version 2.3/2.5 and the CDC's Implementation Guide, version 2.1.

HL7 message files may be uploaded automatically via HTTPS. If that is not available, applications that can generate a file or use TCP/IP may install the HL7 Bridge on their local server to submit directly to LINKS.

Meaningful Use

For Stage 1 MU, a test or ongoing submission to LINKS is required for attesting providers.  For Stage 2 MU, ongoing submission is required.  An exclusion cannot be claimed for this measure unless no immunizations were performed during the EHR reporting period.  Prior to the issuance of an incentive payment for MU, Louisiana Medicaid staff verifies testing or ongoing submission with the Office of Public Health's Center for Population Health Informatics and requests documentation from the attesting facility.  Acceptable documentation includes: 

  • dated screenshots that illustrate a test submission or ongoing transmission with identifying information (e.g., NPI, provider name, facility name);
  • dated record of transmission with identifying information;
  • a letter or email from OPH or other registry confirming test or ongoing transmission; or
  • a scope document from LaHIE.

Public health reporting of vaccinations can be achieved through the Louisiana Health Information Exchange (LaHIE).

The OPH Immunization Registry Program Manager can be reached using the following information:

The LINKS system can be reached at the following address:

More information on meaningful use is available here.