The New York State Department of Health is proud to announce that Colleen Mattimore, M.D., of Western New York Pediatric Associates in Orchard Park, New York, has been selected as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Childhood Immunization Champion for New York. CDC and the CDC Foundation hold this annual awards program to honor immunization champions across the 50 U.S. states, 8 U.S. Territories and Freely Associated States, and the District of Columbia during National Infant Immunization Week (April 16-23, 2016).
Dr. Mattimore was nominated and selected from a pool of health professionals, community advocates, and other immunization leaders for making a significant contribution to public health in New York State through her work in childhood immunization.
A pediatrician for 25 years, Dr. Mattimore has played an active role in vaccine advocacy in Western New York for many years. She has trained physicians, nurses and medical students on communicating with vaccine hesitant parents, and has spoken with parents and schools about the importance of childhood vaccines. Dr. Mattimore has previously been recognized by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) New York Chapter 1, by the Western New York Pediatric, Adolescent and Adult Immunization Coalition, and by the Erie County Department of Health for her work to protect the children of Western New York. Eight years ago she established the Vaccine Safety Coalition and successfully launched a vaccine safety public health multi-media campaign.
Young children rely on the champions in their lives to keep them safe and healthy. Champions may be doctors and nurses who share scientifically accurate, up-to-date information about vaccines with parents. They may be advocates who go the extra mile to ensure that all children in their communities have access to vaccines. They may be public health professionals who work behind the scenes tracking immunization data, coordinating vaccine logistics, or developing public awareness campaigns. They may be parents who share their personal stories about vaccination with their communities.
When families, healthcare professionals, and public health officials work together, all children can be protected from serious and deadly vaccine-preventable diseases. Dr. Mattimore is an inspiration to all of us who care about children’s health in New York. We are pleased and honored to congratulate her on this well-deserved award.