The Sabin Vaccine Institute announced the launch of the newly-formed International Association of Immunization Managers (IAIM). IAIM will operate with support from a five-year grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with a mission to “help drive the achievement of national, regional and international immunization goals, including those in the Global Vaccine Action Plan (GVAP), by fostering forward-thinking and superior management of immunization programs.” The association’s governing body, the IAIM ad hoc Governing Council, held its inaugural meeting in Washington, D.C. on 24 June. The Sabin Vaccine Institute serves as the Secretariat for IAIM and is responsible for executing its day-to-day operations.
Dr. David Salisbury, President of the newly-formed Association’s ad hoc Governing Council and Director of Immunisation in the United Kingdom’s Department of Health, commented, “How well an immunization manager performs his or her job can make the difference in whether the immunization program succeeds; yet these professionals often are not provided with the opportunities for training, peer-to-peer discussion and exchange and skill-building that they need to advance immunization programs. Therefore, it is both welcome and timely that we now have an international association for immunization program managers that can equip them with the right tools and professional network for the job.”
IAIM is described as “the first-ever international association for immunization managers. Its objectives are to establish a forum from which immunization managers can discuss and exchange best practices; build and support international and regional networks of immunization managers; and provide immunization managers with opportunities to develop their technical and leadership capacity. The main benefits IAIM will provide for its members include: convening international and regional meetings to provide a forum for discussion, access to training and cutting-edge information and networking opportunities; organizing peer-to-peer exchanges as a means of sharing success factors and problem-solving strategies among immunization managers; and creating an interactive website where members can access and share best practices, research, training and tools.”