1. Hawkins, Janice PhD, RN, CNS-BC

Article Content

I connected with "The First Injection" (Best of the Blog, May). Like Tracy Kelly, I'm also a nurse educator no longer on the front lines of health care, and I, too, felt compelled to join the fight against COVID-19 by volunteering in local vaccine clinics. In my view, vaccinations are essential to ending this pandemic.


As a global health nurse, I also recognize that the pandemic will not end for any of us until it ends for all of us. COVID-19 has taught us that disease anywhere is a threat everywhere. In addition to volunteering to give vaccines, I use my voice to advocate for global vaccine programs. U.S. support for these programs directly contributes to controlling the spread of disease and helps to build infrastructure for outbreak response. It shocks me that 1.5 million people die each year from vaccine-preventable diseases.1


As nurses, we are called to advocate for vulnerable populations. One in five children around the world lacks access to even routine vaccines.2 I work directly with the United Nations Foundation Shot@Life campaign ( to promote awareness of this issue and raise funding for global childhood immunization programs supported by UNICEF; the World Health Organization; and Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance.


Janice Hawkins, PhD, RN, CNS-BC


Virginia Beach, VA




1. UNICEF. Immunization programme. 2020. [Context Link]


2. CDC Foundation. Global health: immunization. 2021. [Context Link]