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It may seem early, but now is the time for parents and guardians of school-age children to think about required and recommended vaccinations for the 2016-17 school year.
Recent changes have been made to Meningitis vaccination requirements. Every child going into eighth grade or their senior year of high school must receive the Meningitis vaccine. If a student has not had their updated vaccine by the first day of school, they will be unable to attend until they are vaccinated. Parents should begin working vaccinations into their family’s schedule as soon as possible, as the last few days before school starts often see crowded waiting rooms at the health department, clinics and doctor’s offices.
“It’s easy to become busy getting supplies and clothes for back-to-school and forget immunizations,” said Cindy Wyman, MHA, BSN, RN, Immunization Coordinator for the Springfield-Greene County Health Department. This year the state of Missouri requires the Meningococcal vaccine (Menactra or Menveo) for all adolescents going into 8th and 12th grade. “Children will not be allowed in school if their immunizations are not up to date. Last year our walk-in clinic saw approximately 420 people during the week before and the first week of school. To avoid your child from being held out of school because they are not up to date with their immunizations, please call 417-874-1220 and make an appointment--the sooner, the better for immunizations.”
The Springfield-Greene County Health Department provides Vaccines for Children (VFC) Program vaccines at no cost for children age 18 and under who meet one of the following criteria:
Children who are VFC eligible (except those with Medicaid) but reside outside Greene County will be charged an administration fee of $21 per visit.
Children who have insurance that covers vaccinations may receive routine immunizations from their health care providers. The Springfield-Greene County Health Department can provide purchased vaccines for children who have insurance coverage, but they will have to pay at the time of immunization and file insurance themselves. Due the day of immunization will be the cost of the vaccine plus an administration fee.
The Springfield-Greene County Health Department’s back-to-school vaccination clinics for Medicaid, uninsured or underinsured children will begin on Monday, July 25 and run through Tuesday, August 23. Walk-in clinics will be held from 8 to 10 a.m. on Tuesdays ONLY. By-appointment clinics will be held on Mondays from 8:30 to 11 a.m. and from 1:30 to 3 p.m., Wednesdays from 8:30 to 11 a.m. and on Thursdays from 8:30 to 11 a.m. and from 1:30 to 3 p.m. at the Westside Public Health Center at 660 S. Scenic Ave. Participants need to bring the child’s immunization records. Any additional questions can be directed to the Westside Public Health Center at (417) 874-1220.
Jordan Valley Clinic also provides vaccinations and will be open for by-appointment and walk-in clinics on Monday, August 15 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and on Tuesday, August 16 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Walk-in clinics will be also available Wednesday, August 17 from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Jordan Valley Clinic is located at 440 E Tampa, Springfield, MO 65806. To make an appointment at Jordan Valley Clinic call (417) 831-0151.
For more information on the Springfield-Greene County Health Department, contact: Kathryn Wall, (417) 874-1205; for more information on the Springfield Public Schools, contact: Teresa Bledsoe at (417) 523-0021; for more information on Jordan Valley Community Health Center, contact: Shannon Tidwell (417) 831-1551, ext.1250.