Coady, M.H., L. Weiss, Sandro Galea, D.C. Ompad, K. Glidden, and D. Vlahov. 2007. "Rapid vaccine distribution in nontraditional settings: Lessons learned from project VIVA." Journal of Community Health Nursing, 24(2): 79-85.
With growing fear of a worldwide influenza pandemic, programs that can rapidly vaccinate a broad range of persons are urgently needed. Vaccination rates are low among disadvantaged and hard-to-reach populations living within urban communities, and delivering vaccines to these groups may prove challenging. Project VIVA1 (Venue-Intensive Vaccination for Adults), staffed by teams of nurses and outreach workers, aimed to deliver vaccines rapidly within disadvantaged neighborhoods in New York City. Project VIVA nurses offered free influenza vaccine door-to-door and on street corners over 10 days in October, 2005. A total of 1,648 people were vaccinated, exceeding expectation. Careful selection and training of project staff, community involvement in project development, community outreach, and prioritizing street-based distribution may be key factors in an effective rapid vaccination program. In conclusion, this project may be replicated in other communities and utilized for annual vaccination campaigns and in the event of a pandemic.