The National Adult and Influenza Immunization Summit (NAIIS) Immunization Excellence Awards recognize the value and extraordinary contributions of individuals and organizations towards improved vaccination rates within their communities during the past year. NAIIS Immunization Excellence Awards are designated into three categories of recognition: overall influenza season activities, “immunization neighborhood” adult immunization champion, and corporate campaign awards. Nominees were evaluated based on the areas of impact, collaboration, originality, overcoming challenges, and opportunities.
Notably, local public health immunization efforts were among the 2020 award recipients:
- Fremont County Department of Public Health and Environment (Canon City, CO) was awarded the “Immunization Neighborhood” Adult Immunization Champion Award. In 2019, Fremont County Department of Public Health and Environment (FCDPHE) worked to improve the vaccination rates within their community by removing barriers to access and collaborating with local businesses to have the greatest reach and impact. In October, FCDPHE, in partnership with emergency preparedness, Pueblo Community College Nursing program, and Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) hosted a free mass flu vaccination clinic open to the public. In all, over 300 participants received their flu vaccine at no cost to them or their insurance provider.
- Carolyn Cook, RN from the Tacoma Pierce County Health Department (Tacoma, WA) received the Laura Scott 2019-20 Outstanding Influenza Season Activities Award. Ms. Cook’s list of flu vaccine projects and advocacy lengthens every year to ensure that all eligible residents have access to flu vaccine. Carolyn’s most notable achievement was the creation and ongoing success of the School Located Influenza Vaccination Clinics. For over a decade, she has fostered collaboration between the Tacoma Pierce County Health Department, the Medical Reserve Corp, local universities, and local school districts to go into some of the highest need schools in the county and provide free influenza vaccination. This past year alone, over 2200 children were immunized against the flu.
NACCHO congratulates the 2020 NAIIS Immunization Excellence Awards recipients, and applauds FCDPHE and Ms. Cook for their immunization efforts and service at the local public health level. This year’s award recipients have been announced via a news release and a complete description of the award winners’ activities may be viewed in the 2020 Awards Booklet.