News and Events

Immunization Update - April, 2009

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Immunization Works Monthly Immunization Update is provided to professional organization partners for broad distribution to their members and constituencies. The information provided is non-proprietary.

Front Page News

Polio Eradication is Possible, but Problems Persist: Since 1988, when the Global Polio Eradication Initiative was established, the incidence of polio has decreased from an estimated 350,000 cases annually to 1,655 reported in 2008. Cases of wild poliovirus (WPV) type 2 were last reported in October 1999, and indigenous WPV types 1 and 3 (WPV1 and WPV3) have been eliminated from all but four countries worldwide (Afghanistan, India, Nigeria, and Pakistan).

A new report in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report updates previous reports and describes overall progress toward global eradication in 2008. Despite accelerated efforts, polio cases increased 26%, from 1,315 cases in 2007 to 1,655 in 2008. This increase primarily resulted from an increase in Nigeria from 285 cases in 2007 to 801 cases in 2008. Resurgent WPV1 transmission in northern states of Nigeria spread to polio-free southern states and eight neighboring countries in 2008. In India, repeated use of monovalent oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV) type 1 (mOPV1) during 2005-2008 interrupted WPV1 transmission in the western districts of the northern state of Uttar Pradesh for greater than 12 months during 2007-2008; however, in mid-2008, WPV1 imported from the neighboring state of Bihar caused renewed transmission. In Afghanistan and Pakistan, problems in accessing children in conflict-affected areas increased, and an upsurge in WPV1 and WPV3 cases occurred, including an outbreak of WPV1 in Punjab Province, Pakistan. In Africa, during 2008, sustained WPV transmission for greater than 12 months after importation continued in Angola, Chad, the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Niger, and southern Sudan. Increased political oversight and accountability and improved vaccination outreach to insecure areas are needed to achieve the eradication goal.

A recent episode of the NEWSHOUR with Jim Lehrer brings to life the challenges of eradicating polio worldwide. The episode is filmed in Kano—one of several Northern states in Nigeria that have recently experienced a resurgence of polio cases—and features CDC’s Steve Blount.

Other News & Summaries

Child Care and Vaccination Programs to Benefit from Recovery Act: In a recent HHS press release, the Obama Administration announced plans to make $300 million in vaccines and grants available to ensure more underserved Americans receive the vaccines they need. Funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the majority of these new resources will be used to purchase vaccines, which will be distributed through CDC’s Section 317 immunization program to all 50 states, several large cities, and U.S. territories. To see a list of state-by-state funding for vaccine programs, visit the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, Section 317 Immunization Funding Webpage.

Big Draw for Dallas NIC: Nearly 1600 attendees participated in the 43rd National Immunization Conference (NIC), held March 30-April 2, 2009, in Dallas, TX. Dr. Anne Schuchat, Deputy Director for Science and Program (Interim) at CDC, and Dr. Judith Monroe, President of the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials and Indiana State Health Commissioner, spoke at the opening session. The Phil Horne award went to William Bellini, Chief of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Disease’s Measles, Mumps, Rubella, and Herpesvirus Laboratory Branch. The Hilleman Lecture was delivered by Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, and a key advisor to the White House and HHS on global AIDS issues. Handouts and audio/video recordings from the conference will soon be available online at the NIC website. Remember to mark your calendars for the 44th NIC, to be held April 19-22, 2010, in Atlanta, GA.

Standardized Vaccine Abbreviations: Each year, the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) publishes immunization schedules that summarize recommendations for currently licensed vaccines for children aged 18 years and younger, and for adults. In February 2009, ACIP approved a listing of standardized vaccine abbreviations for use in these immunization schedules. The Table of Standardized Vaccine Abbreviations was developed by staff members at CDC; ACIP members and workgroups; editors of Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases, and others. These abbreviations are intended to provide a uniform approach to vaccine references used in ACIP recommendations.

PHEP Grantees Tested in Emergency Response: CDC recently concluded a 12-week nationwide exercise; Doses Administered Exercise 2008 (DAX 2008), which monitored seasonal influenza vaccine doses administered as proxy for pandemic influenza vaccination response activities. The primary purpose of DAX 2008 was to work with grantees to facilitate timely reporting of vaccine doses administered to CDC and to assess information system capabilities and areas for improvement. CDC’s Public Health Emergency Preparedness (PHEP) grantees were asked to collect and report weekly vaccine doses administered data from eight or more clinics over a period of four weeks of their choosing between October 1--December 31, 2009 using the Countermeasure and Response Administration (CRA) System. CRA is a CDC-developed application for tracking and reporting countermeasure use during public health emergencies. Grantees include the 50 states, 3 U.S. territories, 5 Pacific Island Jurisdictions and the localities of Chicago, Los Angeles County, New York City and Washington D.C. Overall, 91% (57/62) of grantees submitted data for at least one seasonal influenza vaccination clinic during the exercise. Fifty percent (31/62) met the criteria to be considered fully successful: 1) collect vaccination data from at least eight clinics over a consecutive four week period within the exercise timeframe; 2) screen vaccinees and report vaccinations administered according to HHS guidelines for general population priority groups; and 3) report weekly for four consecutive weeks. In addition, to meet bio-surveillance exercise requirements for the PHEP cooperative agreement, at least one clinic had to be from a Cities Readiness Initiative (CRI) city and one from a non-CRI location. 

Meetings, Conferences & Resources

Provisional Recommendations for 2009-10 Influenza Season: The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) updated its website with its provisional recommendations for the use of influenza vaccine in the 2009-10 influenza season. Provisional recommendations are those ACIP has voted on but that are not yet approved by CDC or the Department of Health and Human Services and have not yet been published in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR).

New “Pink Book”, Order Now for Best Price: The CDC’s Epidemiology and Prevention of Vaccine-Preventable Diseases (“The Pink Book”) is an essential resource for all public health and healthcare professionals who provide immunizations. Pre-orders are now being accepted for the all-new 11th Edition at the low rate of just $29.75. This price will end soon.

Video Answers Questions Parents Have about Immunizations: After talking with parents across the country, CDC put together a 6-minute video called “Get the Picture: Childhood Immunizations” to help answer the tough questions that real moms had about childhood immunizations.

Reports Say State Budget Cuts Will Impact Public Health: Challenging economic times have impacted all areas of public health, including immunization programs. Three new reports highlight the impact of state budget cuts on public health: 1) The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Shortchanging America’s Health 2009; 2) The National Association of County and City Health Officials’ Survey of Local Health Departments; and 3) The Association of State and Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO) State Budget Cuts Jeopardize America’s Health.

Next ACIP Meeting: The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) meeting will be held on June 24-25, 2009 in Atlanta, GA. Online registration is required for attendance to the meeting. Deadline dates are June 5th for non-U.S. citizens and June 12th for U.S. citizens.

Immunization Update 2009: Please mark your calendars for the July 30, 2009 Live Satellite Broadcast and Webcast from CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD). The event will take place from 9:00 AM-11:30 AM and noon-2:30 PM EST. See the CDC Vaccine Education and Training Webpage for more information.

Get Ready for National Infant Immunization Week: National Immunization Week (NIIW) will be celebrated April 25-May 2, 2009 in conjunction with Vaccination Week in the Americas (VWA). The theme for NIIW is “Love them. Protect them. Immunize Them.” Visit the NIIW Events Webpage for planning and evaluation resources, public relations materials, and communication campaign materials. Use this form to add your local activity to the National Calendar of NIIW Events.

Annual Conference on Vaccine Research: CDC and 11 other national and international agencies and organizations will collaborate with the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases in sponsoring the Twelfth Annual Conference on Vaccine Research, April 27-29, 2009, at the Marriott Waterfront Hotel, Baltimore, Maryland. For more information on the Annual Conference on Vaccine Research, visit the Conference Webpage.
CDC Training Opportunities: Through established programs, CDC offers many unique training opportunities in infectious disease, including international opportunities. For a current listing of CDC training opportunities, please visit the CDC Public Health Training Webpage.

CDC Job Openings: CDC is committed to recruiting and hiring qualified candidates for a wide range of immunization positions. Researchers, Medical Officers and Epidemiologists and other specialties are often needed to fill positions within CDC. For a current listing, including international opportunities, please visit the CDC Employment Webpage.

Respiratory News & Resources

Since 2006, immunization has been part of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. As a result, readers can periodically expect to see news about respiratory diseases.

Save the Date: Get Smart about Antibiotics Week: Mark your calendars for “Get Smart about Antibiotics Week”, October 5th-11th, 2009.
For more information, please contact Darcia Johnson at or visit the “Get Smart” Webpage.

The Immunization Works Database Manager can be contacted at

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