Specialty Societies Advancing Adult Immunization (SSAAI)

The Specialty Societies Advancing Adult Immunization (SSAAI) program is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as part of a financial assistance award to the Council of Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS) totaling $41,508,742 with 100 percent funded by CDC/HHS. The contents are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of nor endorsement, by CDC/HHS or the U.S. Government. 

Program Overview

A Cooperative Agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

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In September 2021, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) awarded a cooperative agreement to the Council of Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS), a coalition of over 50 specialty societies representing more than 800,000 physicians across healthcare to improve vaccination among high-risk adults. This five-year cooperative agreement currently includes $40.3 million in funding in the first three years to support increased COVID-19, influenza, and routine vaccinations in high-risk adults with chronic medical conditions. As part of the request for proposal, CDC specifically requested engagement of specialty society partners that care for patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, asthma, diabetes, heart disease, cancer and chronic kidney disease, as well as older adults, and staff in occupational health settings.


The Standards for Adult Immunization Practice (2), which were revised by the National Vaccine Advisory Committee in 2013, note the critical role that all health professionals play in assessing, recommending, administering or referring for vaccination, and documenting vaccination. While vaccination is a core element of the review of clinical preventive services in primary care, specialists may not prioritize vaccination assessment and administration. The role of professional organizations is specifically mentioned in the Standards for Adult Immunization Practice. Specialty societies that care for patients with chronic illness can provide more targeted continuing education and clinical guidance to ensure that specialty physicians play a greater role in immunization of these high-risk patients.


The purpose of this project is to ensure that all adults, especially high-risk adults with co-morbidities, receive up-to-date vaccinations for influenza, COVID-19, and all applicable vaccines. CMSS serves as the lead organization for this project and as a catalyst to work with 50 member societies, seven collaborating subspecialty members, and partnering healthcare systems to incorporate the Standards for Immunization Practice into clinical care and drive adult immunization through education, dissemination and quality improvement initiatives.

CMSS is working collectively with a consortium of subspecialty partners, including American Association of Clinical Endocrinology (AACE)American College of Cardiology (ACC)American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM)American Geriatrics Society (AGS)American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO)American Society of Nephrology (ASN), and the American Thoracic Society (ATS), to implement targeted immunization and quality improvement strategies and activities that will support increased vaccination of high-risk patients.

To support this aim, these seven subspecialty partners are partnering with healthcare systems to develop, promote, and implement quality improvement platforms to improve adult vaccination. CMSS and our subspecialty partners are developing and updating vaccine policy statements to promote implementation of Standards of Adult Immunization Practice; promoting continuing education, resources and strategies; training vaccine immunization champions to promote outreach and education with subspecialty providers; and convening national and regional meetings to share best practices and lessons learned with the CDC, our 50 member specialty societies, and the greater medical community.


(1) https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/imz-managers/coverage/adultvaxview/pubs-resources/NHIS-2017.html
(2) https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/hcp/adults/for-practice/standards/index.html

Program Contacts

Sarah Imhoff, Senior Program Director

Ashlan Ruth, Program Manager