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National Network for Immunization Information Awarded $850,000 in Grants

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Children�s Vaccine Program at PATH Will Support Scientifically Sound Information on Vaccines

April 04, 2002

Jennifer Hudman - 301 652 1558

Alexandria, VA � (April 4, 2002) � The National Network for Immunization Information (NNii) announced today that it has been awarded two grants--$750,000 from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and $100,000 from the Seattle-based Children�s Vaccine Program at PATH (Program for Appropriate Technology in Health)�in support of communication and education programs on vaccines.

NNii is a leading independent, non-profit organization devoted to providing accurate information about the effectiveness, value, and safety of immunizations. Since its creation in 1999, NNii has become a critical component of our national immunization program though communication and education.

The communication and education programs of NNii are vitally important, given that research has shown that one-quarter of parents express concerns about vaccine safety and a majority of U.S. health providers report that at least one family in their practice has refused one or all routinely recommended vaccines in the past year, often citing �safety� or �philosophical� reasons.

�These grants allow NNii to continue to fulfill its mission to improve the immunization dialogue among parents, health care professionals, the media, and policy makers. NNii serves as an independent and scientifically credible source of information about immunization policies and practices and related issues of vaccine safety and effectiveness,� said Dr. Bruce Gellin, executive director of NNii.

Additionally, the grants will allow NNii to continue its program activities and efforts in the following core areas:

  • Website: The award-winning NNii website ( is designed as a comprehensive, easy-to-use educational resource to provide accurate information about the benefits and risks of immunization.�
  • Immunization Newsbriefs: An e-mail service that is also available in a searchable database on the NNii website, this three-time/week service combs over 1,400 publications worldwide and provides summaries of immunization-related articles that appear in the media. Currently, this service has over 5,000 subscribers around the world.�
  • Communicating With Patients About Immunization: NNii developed a resource kit for health care providers to assist them in talking to their patients and addressing questions such as how vaccine recommendations are made, why we vaccinate, and other complex issues. The resource kit has been distributed to thousands of immunization providers and downloaded in full for free from the NNii website by more than 26,000 additional people.
  • Audience Research: NNii�s extensive research on knowledge, attitudes and beliefs toward immunization among the public, health care providers and policy makers guide NNii efforts, and have been widely distributed and published by the media and medical research publications such as Pediatrics.
  • Media and Legislative Outreach: NNii�s efforts have successfully positioned the Network as a critical and highly responsive source of immunization information for the media and the public. Leading members of Congress and their staff have come to rely on NNii for help on improving the quality of legislative debates related to immunization policy. NNii has also worked with organizations that state policy makers rely on to frame issues and facilitate immunization discussions in state legislatures.

The mission of the National Network for Immunization Information (NNii) is to provide the public, health professionals, policy makers, and the media with up-to-date, scientifically valid information related to immunization to help them understand the issues and to make informed decisions.

NNii�s partner organizations include the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Nurses Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners, and the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. For more information on NNii and its partners, please visit the NNii website at

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is the nation�s largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to health and health care. To learn more about its mission and work, see

The Children's Vaccine Program at PATH works to ensure that all children receive the full benefits of new, lifesaving vaccines without undue delay. To learn more about its mission and work, see

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