Kelly Waldera
November 2022
Hennepin Healthcare
United States




She is our vaccination guru with extensive knowledge in all things vaccine-related. Her commitment to ensuring compliance with state-funded programs ensures equitable access to vaccines for all those we serve.
Through thick and thin, Kelly has been a stable rock in our system’s efforts to support the health of our employees and the population we serve through her work in vaccine-preventable diseases. She is our vaccination guru with extensive knowledge in all things vaccine-related. Her commitment to ensuring compliance with state-funded programs ensures equitable access to vaccines for all those we serve. Her leadership in developing practice-based standard orders has been instrumental in increasing access to vaccines and allowing nurses to work at the top of their licenses.

In addition, she is the fearless leader of our system’s Vaccine Committee, helping us maintain and improve over time. With COVID-19 and the ever-changing vaccines, formulations, and updates, Kelly has been resilient. She expresses a positive attitude and facilities quick turnaround for vaccine updates so that our system can respond to changing recommendations. 

Kelly is the epitome of patient-centric care. Her job description has her listed as the Vaccine Coordinator for our health system. This is too simple of a description, as her role expands ordering, storage, order sets/ protocols - and with the current environment around COVID, responding to changes quickly, so our teams have updated tools to care for patients. She makes herself available 24/7 for questions and issues ... and has been known to show up at clinics late at night to assure refrigerators are running well (and refrigerated items stored safely!)

Kelly co-chairs the system’s Vaccine Committee. Kelly is responsible for maintaining compliance with the State of Minnesota requirements for vaccines and the free vaccine program. This supports access to vaccines for our patients and improved health in the communities we serve. A key initiative to highlight here is the Mobile Vaccine Clinic. Kelly was instrumental in creating and actuating the Mobile Vaccine Clinic during COVID. This program focused on our pediatric population, to improve access to vaccines and assured patients stayed current with the vaccine schedules. Her name is immediately associated with vaccines in our system. I see all the behind-the-scenes work that she does, to assure access and care for our patients. Kelly is deserving of this honor.


Kelly goes above and beyond in whatever she does. Whether it's working evenings, weekends, and on her vacation- Kelly is dedicated to providing the most up-to-date and accurate information on vaccines. She was instrumental in vaccinating staff and patients with the COVID-19 vaccine- reviewing the clinical trials, attending ACIP meetings, digesting and disseminating results to HHS staff, and then helping to roll out thousands of vaccines not to mention pivoting every time there was new guidance. Kelly is an amazing nurse who is the most well-versed in immunizations and her strong work ethic makes her a treasure to keep at HHS!


Kelly's job as our vaccine coordinator is to make sure we have the safest processes in place for our vaccine program. She has been available around the clock to be able to respond quickly when there are any issues with the refrigerators temps, which could put our patients at risk if the vaccines stored there were to go bad. Kelly has organized our Vaccine Committee in such a way that key stakeholders throughout the organization are able to weigh in on our procedures to hold them to the highest standards. She continually keeps herself aware of the latest recommendations of the CDC by attending all APIC meetings and any applicable MDH meetings. Especially in the time of COVID, Kelly worked hard to make sure that our standard orders and processes were aligned with the everchanging guidelines and that our patients can be assured that we are operating under the most up-to-date information possible to provide them with the right vaccines at the right times. Thank you, Kelly!


Kelly Waldera has led our vaccination program for years. In the last 2 years during the COVID-19 pandemic, she has led a heroic initiative to rapidly deploy COVID-19 vaccines to HHS. She works tirelessly to do this rapidly and in a way that easy for provider implementation. Vaccine Committee Leadership - Her commitment, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, to managing our mass immunization effort, was unwavering. Hennepin Healthcare was a leader in the effort to vaccinate in our communities - and Kelly was a HUGE part of this success! Our Wellness Team could not have delivered 140,000 Covid vaccinations in the past year if it was not for the constant support that Kelly provided. She was never too busy to consult with us regarding vaccination and helped us work thru several very difficult patient scenarios with clients out in the community. She was so patient as we worked thru 25 revisions of the Pfizer standing order and always made sure we had information in a timely manner. Though she does not work directly with patients, the work she does supports SO many patients in our system. Kelly is a tired less advocate for our patients and their access to vaccines. Kelly is devoted to ensuring that the patient care experience is smooth and seamless to ensure that this simple preventative measure is available to all patients within the health system. Her many tasks and work go unseen by many as she is the unsung hero many do not know all of the work she does relating to vaccines. Kelly is responsible for leading the Vaccine Committee, procuring contracts for seasonal vaccines, stays abreast with the latest approvals and changes in the vaccines schedules as recommended by ACIP.

Also, she has spent countless hours relating to the COVID Vaccine. Kelly has made multiple changes to the PBSO relating to COVID as each new twist in approval/change in the eligible group is announced. She is dedicated to the organization, its patients, and caregivers and deserves to be recognized for all the work she does. Commitment to staying up to date with rapidly changing COVID vaccine guidelines. Always available to providers who have urgent vaccine-related questions/needs. Dedication to vaccine education in all HHS clinics Kelly is the epitome of patient-centric care.