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University Health Center’s immunization team wins award

UHC Immunization Award 2013 group-h
The 2013 Walt Orenstein Champions for Immunization Award was presented to the University Health Center's Immunization Team. Immunization team leaders (from left to right) include Davelle Pursner

Athens, Ga. – The University of Georgia Health Center’s immunization team received the 2013 Walt Orenstein Champions for Immunization Award at the Department of Public Health’s 20th annual Immunize Georgia Conference earlier this month.

The immunization team includes staff from the University Health Center Allergy and Travel Clinic, and the registration and health information department.

The Walt Orenstein Champions for Immunization Award honors those who exemplify standards for child and adolescent and adult immunization practices. These standards are a national strategy to protect the public against vaccine-preventable diseases and provide guidelines and resources to follow when providing immunizations.

The University Health Center immunization team processed more than 8,000 new student immunization records, identifying their immunization history and any needs for updated vaccines.

“Our immunization team is deserving of this award due to their dedicated, enthusiastic and single-minded commitment to successfully providing safe vaccines to students and other patients of the University Health Center,” said Martha Davis Gollin, associate director of patient services at the University Health Center. “Together they meet the needs of each individual student so that their entry into the University of Georgia has a smooth, expedited and seamless beginning at UHC.”

The registration and health information department ensures accurate documentation as part of the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia vaccine requirements for each new student. The Allergy and Travel Clinic staff provides consultation, makes clinical decisions determining when additional vaccinations are required and administers immunizations when necessary.

The award is named after Dr. Walt Orenstein, a professor of medicine, global health and pediatrics and associate director for the Emory Vaccine Center at Emory University. Orenstein previously worked at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where he was deputy director of immunization programs and served on the global health program’s vaccine delivery team, overseeing more than $324 million in funding to control vaccine-preventable diseases. He is also the former director of the national immunization program at the Centers for Disease Control and the co-editor of the textbook, “Vaccines.”