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Minneapolis pediatrician earns CDC Childhood Immunization Champion award

Dr. Dawn Martin honored as part of National Infant Immunization Week

Dr. Dawn L. Martin of Minneapolis has been named a 2018 CDC Childhood Immunization Champion for her dedication to promoting childhood immunization in Minnesota.

Martin is a board-certified pediatrician who has worked at Hennepin Healthcare (formerly Hennepin County Medical Center) since 1994. In that time, Martin has emerged as a leader and immunization expert. She has worked locally and globally to care for patients with vaccine-preventable diseases. This work has fueled her passion for making sure all children receive recommended immunizations.

During the 2017 Minnesota measles outbreak, Martin played a pivotal role in Hennepin Healthcare’s response. She worked closely with clinic staff and specialists in infection prevention, case management and others to guide response planning. Martin also worked with staff to contact hundreds of families with children in need of MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine and to provide education on the importance of vaccination to prevent measles.

“Dr. Martin’s commitment to childhood immunization is admirable and we are so thankful to have her as a partner,” said Kris Ehresmann, director of infectious disease for the Minnesota Department of Health. “Her work and leadership not only protects children from dangerous diseases but also contributes to protecting the community’s health.”

Education for the next generation of physicians is especially important to Martin. She has conducted multiple trainings on vaccine delivery and vaccine hesitancy to help staff be more effective in interactions with patients and families. Martin also serves as co-chair of Hennepin Healthcare’s Vaccine Committee.

“Dr. Martin’s efforts have benefited every layer of our immunization-delivery system,” said Dr. Andrew W. Kiragu, interim chief of the Department of Pediatrics at Hennepin Healthcare. “She is highly regarded internally and externally for her knowledge and passion.”

Martin’s work extends beyond the walls of Hennepin Healthcare. She chairs the Minnesota Chapter of the Academy of Pediatrics Immunization Workgroup. She is a member of the Minnesota Department of Health’s Minnesota Immunization Practices Advisory Committee and a board member for the Minnesota Childhood Immunization Coalition. Martin is also the assistant program director for primary care at the University of Minnesota Pediatric Residency Training Program. In these roles, she inspires and educates others on the impact and importance of immunizations on children’s health.

Each year during National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the CDC Foundation honor health professionals and community leaders from around the country with the CDC Childhood Immunization Champion Awards. These awards acknowledge the outstanding efforts of people who strive to ensure that children in their communities are fully immunized against 14 preventable diseases before the age of 2.

CDC Childhood Immunization Champions were selected from a pool of health professionals, coalition members, community advocates and other immunization leaders. State immunization programs coordinated the nomination process and submitted nominees to CDC. One winner was selected in each of the participating states and the District of Columbia.


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