Michal Chojnacky will be honored on June 10, 2013 with the 2012 Arthur S. Flemming Award, presented by the Trachtenberg School of Public Policy and Public Administration at The George Washington University. The award recognizes her remarkable achievements in translating laboratory research in temperature measurement to public health clinics and primary care physician offices to help ensure the potency of over $3.6 billion of vaccines distributed each year through programs, such as Vaccines for Children, administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Studies suggest that as much as one third of all distributed vaccines may have experienced temperatures outside specification, corresponding to a potential loss of $1.2 billion for the CDC program alone. By scientifically evaluating the CDC cold-chain management system under conditions that replicate everyday practices of vaccine providers, Ms. Chojnacky developed a suite of tools and training materials, such as the CDC vaccine toolkit, that are dramatically improving vaccine storage, handling, and monitoring. With the adoption of Ms. Chojnacky's results internationally, her impact will be magnified, since the distribution of almost $27 billion of vaccines annually will benefit from improved temperature monitoring and control.
For more information Ms. Chojnacky's research, see Storage and monitoring of vaccines.