Purpose: The goal of The National Task Force on Hepatitis B Immunization, Focus on Asians and Pacific Islanders (TF) is to achieve a 90% hepatitis B vaccination rate of children born before 1993 by the Year 2004. The purpose of this article is to provide a historical framework and a discussion of the achievements by the TF on the efforts taken to achieve its goal.
Methods: A review of all historical TF records, including TF minutes, quarterly reports, annual reports, newsletter articles, journal articles and other documents and Web sites was undertaken.
Principal findings: The TF has achieved and exceeded many of its objectives, and has been particularly effective in its public policy and public education endeavors. It has been a national catalyst for organizing hepatitis B catch-up efforts for those children who have not received a full 3 dose complement of hepatitis B vaccine.
Conclusions: It takes the dedicated work of many individuals and organizations to achieve a goal as ambitious as that of the TF. However, the TF has garnered significant volunteer support. The efforts of these dedicated individuals must be recognized. It must also be recognized that without significant financial backing and technical support, the work of these individuals is limited. The TF demonstrates many of the hallmarks of a successful coalition, and through its leadership, will continue to strive toward its goal.
Relevance: This article is relevant in that it outlines the significant achievements of a dedicated group of individuals to solve a serious public health problem, that of eliminating hepatitis B as a risk for our children. It describes the TF achievements, but also points to the barriers that a coalition can face in the light of limited resources and the demands of time. This article describes the elements of an effective coalition and compares the work of the TF to those elements.