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CDC honors Connecticut childrens' book author for work in promoting vaccinations

Immunization plays a key role in protecting the health of America’s children.
Immunization plays a key role in protecting the health of America’s children.Photo by Joe Raedle/Getty Images

New Milford, CT nurse Geri Rodda has been presented with this year’s CDC Childhood Immunization Champion award for her work promoting vaccinations among infants 0-2 years old in her community by writing two children's books, The Flu and You ”and “Vaccines for Maxine” as a means of attracting national attention to the importance of childhood immunization. The books have since been purchased by numerous state health departments to “educate their communities, and help convince parents of the benefits of having their children vaccinated.”

“Immunization plays a key role in protecting the health of America’s children,” said Anne Dr. Schuchat, Director of CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. “Ensuring that all children are immunized requires a cadre of dedicated health professionals and community leaders nationwide. The Champion awards give us the opportunity to salute these individuals for their service to our children.”

"For almost 15 years, Geri has been an innovator and leader in the promotion of childhood immunizations in our state,” added Connecticut Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Jewel Mullen. “Every child has the right to be fully immunized, and Geri exemplifies the many dedicated health professionals across Connecticut who work hard to ensure that all children receive life-saving vaccinations when they need them.”

Rodda, and other CDC Childhood Immunization Champions were selected from a pool of health care professionals, coalition members, community advocates, and other immunization leaders. State and Territorial Immunization Programs coordinated the nomination process and notified CDC of their recommendations. No more than one winner is selected in each state or territory with the awards presented annual during during National Infant Immunization Week