Health department strongly encouraging early vaccinations prior to new school year

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COLUMBUS, Ga.–The Georgia Department of Public Health is urging parents to have their children’s vaccinations taken care of early, rather than waiting until the last minute before the new school year starts. Health officials say children could need immunizations or medical examinations, particularly if they are new to the Georgia public school system.

Officials with the Georgia Department of Public Health say all of their offices are ready with any vaccination your child might need prior to returning to school. Students entering the 7th grade are required to have the Tdap and Meningococcal vaccinations. Additionally the Georgia Department of Public Health highly recommends the HPV vaccine.

For children aged 16 to 18, a second dose of the Meningococcal vaccine is recommended, according to the Georgia Department of Public Health.

When going to your local health department office, officials say you should bring your child’s vaccination record. If your healthcare provider participates in the GRITS registry your child’s records can be accessed by the health department.

Officials with the Georgia Department of Public Health say Pre-K and Kindergarten children, along with any child new to the Muscogee County School District also need to have Vision, Hearing, Dental, and Nutrition Screenings prior to the start of the new school year.

Officials say out of state records can be transferred by staff at the health department for a fee. Payment by cash, credit card, or debit card will be collected at the time of service. Also Medicaid, Peach Care, and some other insurances are accepted.

All health department offices are open Monday through Friday. No appointment is necessary for immunizations. To find a health department location near your you can visit this website: http://www.westcentralhealthdistrict.com

In Columbus you can call 706-321-6230 for more details. Or you can visit the website: http://www.columbushealth.com

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