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AAFP President to Primary Care Clinicians: On Vaccines—Listen, Reassure, Advocate



The COVID-19 pandemic derailed routine immunizations and triggered a flood of vaccine misinformation beyond the COVID shot. Here, 3 ways to move forward.

In this call to action for family physicians—and all clinicians with the ability to provide routine immunizations, across the lifespan—Tochi Iroku-Malize, MD, MPH, president of the American Academy of Family Physicians and a practicing FP in Long Island, NY, emphasizes 3 important actions:

  • Listen carefully and patiently to concerns and questions from patients and parents/guardians about vaccines.
  • Reassure them with knowledge, personal anecdote, science for some, that vaccines are safe and effective.
  • Advocate for immunization, using every patient visit as an opportunity to educate on vaccines and to administer them when appropriate.

Listen to her comments during a recent conversation with Patient Care©.

More from the Patient Care conversation with Iroku-Malize:
Declining Kindergarten Vaccination Rate Leaves 250k Children Unprotected: AAFP President's Perspective

It's Vaccination Catch-up Time for Kids: An APB from AAFP President Iroku-Malize

AAFP President Responds to Steady Decline in Vaccination Rates for Kindergarten-aged Children

Tochi Iroku-Malize, MD, MPH, a family physician in Long Island, New York, is current president of the American Academy of Family Physicians. Iroku-Malize serves as founding chair and professor of family medicine for the Donald and Barbara Zucker School of Medicine at Hofstra/Northwell in Hempstead, New York, and is senior vice president and chair of the family medicine service line for Northwell Health. She oversees 4 family medicine residency programs and 3 fellowships spread across 23 hospitals. She was previously the director of the family medicine residency program at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, New York. She is currently a member of the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine and is active in the Association of Departments of Family Medicine.

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