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Students should be vaccinated

Clark County health officials remind parents about immunizations before school starts.

As the end of summer vacation rapidly approaches, local health facilities are encouraging students and parents to register for back-to-school vaccinations.

“Don’t procrastinate. The sooner, the better,” said Gayle Harris, nursing supervisor at the Clark County Combined Health District. “Appointments might fill up.”

The health department offers walk-in services on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 7:30 a.m.-5 p.m. On Tuesdays and Thursday, appointments are required and scheduled or 7:45 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. The first and third Tuesdays have extended appointment times to 6:15 p.m.

“We work primarily with walk-ins,” said Harris.

Vaccinations for children through age 18 are $10 per shot. If the parent cannot pay the $10, the child will not be denied the shot. These vaccinations are provided by Vaccinations for Children through the Ohio Department of Health.

“If a kid comes in that’s not been vaccinated, they (health department) will give as many as they can to get them up to date,” said Anne Jacobs of Nova Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine in Springfield.

“The health district is kind of a safety net,” said Harris.

Vaccinations are provided by private medical providers, too. The Rocking Horse Community Health Center, Nova Pediatrics and Pediatric Associates of Springfield also provide vaccinations for children.

“If the school is saying you need it by a certain date, I know our office can get you in,” said Jacobs.

Jacobs advises if children do not have health insurance at the time of their vaccinations to go to the health department.

Children who are entering kindergarten must be vaccinated for several diseases, some which include chicken pox, polio, measles and Hepatitis B. Going into seventh grade, a booster shot and a tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis vaccination, known as a tdap vaccination, are required.

By Ohio law, college enrollment does not require vaccinations, however, to protect against Hepatitis B and meningitis, college students who live on-campus are required to get vaccinations.

August is National Immunization Awareness Month and encourages people to get vaccinations.

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