Five more health systems have partnered with the American Thoracic Society (ATS) to improve vaccination rates. The health systems are:

  • Grady Health System (Atlanta, Ga)
  • Meharry Medical College (Nashville, Tenn)
  • St Luke’s Health System (Boise, Idaho)
  • University of Colorado (Aurora, Colo)
  • Wayne Health (Detroit, Mich)

The health systems join the University of Arizona/Banner Health, West Virginia University Hospitals Inc, and San Francisco Health Network/University of California to help identify barriers to vaccination and find ways to improve vaccination rates in various demographic groups.

In the fall of 2021, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced it had awarded a grant to the Center of Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS) to implement a vaccine initiative—Specialty Societies Advancing Adult Immunization—over a five-year period. The ATS, among others, was tapped by CMSS to address COVID-19, influenza, and pneumococcal vaccine implementation gaps. Specifically, ATS will focus on adults with respiratory diseases, including COPD and asthma.

With funding from the ATS, each health system will focus on collecting baseline immunization data and testing strategies to improve immunization rates within health systems. At the end of the grant, health systems will have tested and identified which strategies work among specific populations and across many health systems.

“As we look to the fall and the beginning of flu season, we are reminded of just how critical the vaccine initiative is,” says ATS president M Patricia Rivera, MD, ATSF, in a release. “We are grateful to our health system partners for collaborating with us to help improve patients’ health across the country.”

As a demonstration of its ongoing commitment to immunization access, the ATS’s Executive Committee has endorsed the National Vaccine Advisory Committee Standards for Adult Immunization.

For information on vaccine resources, including the latest guidance on the COVID-19 booster and RSV vaccine, visit the ATS Vaccine Resource Center.

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