Family Medicine Residency Programs Recognized for Increasing Childhood Immunizations Rates in Underserved Areas

The American Academy of Family Physicians Foundation Announces 2009 AAFP Foundation Wyeth Immunization Award Winners

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Megan Moriarty
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237, Ext. 5221

LEAWOOD, Kan. — The American Academy of Family Physicians Foundation is pleased to announce the winners of the 2009 AAFP Foundation Wyeth Immunization awards. These celebrated family medicine residency programs have achieved excellence in clinical practice by developing creative solutions that result in increased immunization rates in their communities.

Ten monetary grants and scholarships for residents to attend the AAFP’s National Conference were presented to the following programs:

  • Family Medicine Residency of Idaho, Boise, Idaho
  • Mercer University School of Medicine/Medical Center of Central Georgia Family Medicine Residency Program, Macon, Ga.
  • Midland Family Medicine Residency, Midland, Mich.
  • NY Presbyterian Hospital-Columbia University Family Medicine Residency Program, New York, N.Y.
  • San Joaquin General Hospital Family Medicine Residency Program, French Camp, Calif.
  • Scottsdale Healthcare Family Medicine Residency Program, Scottsdale, Ariz.
  • Smoky Hill Family Medicine Residency Program, Salina, Kan.
  • St. Vincent Mercy Med Center/Mercy Health Partners Family Medicine Residency Program, Toledo, Ohio
  • University of Rochester/Highland Hospital Family Medicine Residency Program, Rochester, N.Y.
  • Western Reserve Care Systems Family Medicine Residency Program, Youngstown, Ohio

“Vaccine compliance and timely immunizations are crucial for maintaining the health of children and preventing illness in both children and adults,” said Mark H. Belfer, D.O., FAAFP and president of the AAFP Foundation. “However, without active monitoring and established protocols, immunization rates can fall, leaving children at risk for serious infectious diseases. I would like to offer my congratulations to the winners of this year’s awards. We hope their best practices provide examples to others of new approaches that can be used to improve vaccine compliance.”

The 2009 AAFP Foundation Wyeth Immunization Award winners were chosen for their ability to find creative, team-based solutions that increase immunization rates. The 2009 recipients were chosen for one of the following award categories:

  • Best Practices - effective systems in place that are achieving high immunization rates within a specified 12-month period;
  • Most Improved - overcoming barriers to greatly improve immunization rates within a specified 12-month period;
  • System Implementation — implementing a new system that will increase immunization rates in medically underserved children.

“The AAFP Foundation applauds this year’s program winners for their dedication to protecting children from infectious diseases and to raising awareness of the importance of immunizations to a community’s health and well-being,” said Craig M. Doane, executive director of the AAFP Foundation. “We are proud to recognize programs that share our vision of achieving optimal health for everyone.”

About the AAFP Foundation Wyeth Immunization Awards Program
The AAFP Foundation Wyeth Immunization Awards Program recognizes family medicine residency programs that are overcoming barriers to childhood immunizations and sharing the best practices. Each application is reviewed and scored by a panel appointed by the AAFP Foundation. This program is supported by a grant from Wyeth Vaccines. For more information, including a tip sheet of best practices from past winners, please visit: (

About the AAFP Foundation
The AAFP Foundation serves as the philanthropic arm of the American Academy of Family Physicians and advances the values of Family Medicine by promoting humanitarian, educational, and scientific initiatives that improve the health of all people.

About the AAFP

Founded in 1947, the American Academy of Family Physicians represents 134,600 physicians and medical students nationwide, and it is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.

Family physicians conduct approximately one in five of the total medical office visits in the United States per year – more than any other specialty. Family physicians provide comprehensive, evidence-based, and cost-effective care dedicated to improving the health of patients, families and communities. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing and personal patient-physician relationship where the family physician serves as the hub of each patient’s integrated care team. More Americans depend on family physicians than on any other medical specialty.

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