New Britain City Journal

New Britain's Weekly Online Newspaper

Health

Love Them, Protect Them, Immunize Them

National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW) is an annual observance to highlight the importance of protecting infants from vaccine-preventable diseases and to celebrate the achievements of immunization programs in promoting healthy communities throughout the United States. This year, NIIW is scheduled to be held April 23-30.

Vaccines are among the most successful and cost-effective public health tools available for preventing disease and death. They not only help protect vaccinated individuals, but also help protect entire communities by preventing and reducing the spread of infectious diseases.

During the last week in April, hundreds of communities across the United States will

join those in more than 100 other countries around the world to celebrate the critical role vaccination plays in safeguarding our children, communities and public health. This global immunization awareness campaign will include Vacation Week in the Americas, European Immunization Week, Vaccination Week in the Eastern Mediterranean and African Vaccination Week.

Infants are particularly vulnerable to infectious diseases; that is why it is critical to protect them through immunization. Each day, nearly 12,000 babies are born in the United States, and all of them will need to be immunized against 14 vaccine-preventable diseases before age two.

Immunization is a shared responsibility. Families, health care professionals and public health officials must work together to help protect the entire community.

The New Britain Rock Cats and the New Britain Health Department have joined forces to host Immunization Records Day on Friday, April 29th, at New Britain Stadium. The 6:35 PM contest vs. the Harrisburg Senators (Washington Nationals affiliate) will have a post game pyrotechnic show presented by Stanley Black & Decker, further encouraging families to attend. Parents can bring a copy of their child’s immunization record and will receive a free ticket for the game with a paid adult ticket. Their records can then be reviewed at the New Britain Immunization Program table to help ensure that the record is up to date.

Ramona K. Anderson, the Immunization Program Coordinator at the New Britain Health Department, stated, “ We all think it’s great that as parents you are providing proper health care tied in with exercise and healthy lifestyle choices. Let’s all celebrate that together on Friday night at the ballgame!”

A local pediatrician, Dr. Matteo Lopreiato from Berlin Pediatric Associates, will throw out the first pitch!

Look for the New Britain Immunization Program table at New Britain Stadium on the 29th for more information about childhood diseases and how to prevent them. During the month of April, there is also a display in the New Britain Public Library showcase that highlights all of the public health programs promoted by public health initiatives.

Please contact the New Britain Health Department at (860) 612-2777 for further information.