August 8, 2007

CONTACT: M. “Peggy” Salisbury 908-771-5730;
pager 908-539-6418 - Robert Rachlin 908-771-6709


RUNNELLS Specialized Hospital of Union County Hosts
Symposium on the Value of Vaccines


RUNNELLS Specialized Hospital recently held a symposium on the “Value of Vaccines.” The objective of the symposium was to discuss the economic value of prevention through use of vaccines, as well as milestones in vaccine history. Additionally, the future of vaccines was discussed. The symposium was jointly sponsored by GlaxoSmithKline in partnership with the Union County Immunization Center, which is under the auspices of Union County’s RUNNELLS Specialized Hospital and the Department of Human Services.

Speaking first was Kay Young, RN, MS, and Union County Immunization Director. She welcomed the audience of over 150 Union County School and Health Department Nurses each of whom received 2 Professional Development Hours from the New Jersey Department of Education. Next, Mrs. Young introduced guest speaker William Kelly. Mr. Kelly is with GlaxoSmithKline’s US Vaccine Division.

He addressed the audience on the economic value of disease prevention through the use of vaccines. For example, he related that for every $1 spent on immunizing the public against measles, mumps, and rubella there is a savings of $24 to be realized in money not spent in the treatment of these diseases. Next, Kelly discussed the part vaccines will play in the future of medicine. “As we live in an increasingly mobile society where diseases will know no borders, vaccines will continue to be critical tools in the global health arena. They will reduce suffering and death and improve the quality of life throughout the world, and help to avert global pandemics.

“Mr. Kelley gave a lecture that was in keeping with the philosophy of the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders. Together with RUNNELLS, we work to provide critical health education to the citizens of Union County,” stated Chester Holmes Union County Freeholder and liaison to the RUNNELLS Board of Managers.

The Union County Immunization Center provides free immunizations through the Federal Vaccines for Children (VFC) program to all eligible Union County children age 18 and under. Every year, thousands of Union County children are immunized at the center against 17 different communicable diseases including tetanus, mumps, polio, meningitis and Hepatitis B.

The center is located at 342 Westminster Avenue in Elizabeth.
It is open Monday through Thursday from 8:30 AM – 3:30 PM.
For more information call 908 965-2734.