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Back to school means time for children’s vaccinations

As the clock winds down to the official start of school for most Clark County School District families, the topic of immunizations during COVID-19 is being raised.

Dr. Brian Labus, a UNLV epidemiologist says that “it’s quite challenging to get kids immunized to begin with.” Now, COVID-19 is making it harder for parents to get their kids in to see a doctor due to limited appointments.

Labus points out that some parents may be putting off appointments because they are worried about going out. However, that could backfire as a delay in immunizations could raise concerns for other types of vaccine preventable diseases.

“Just because we have an outbreak of one disease doesn’t mean that all these other ones go away and that we should stop paying attention to them,” he said. “They are going to be problems just like they have been every other year even though we have COVID that’s not the only thing we should be concerned about.”

Even though Nevada has excellent vaccination rates when it comes to school entry, this year poses a different challenge: Too many appointment requests, not enough time.

Due to COVID-19, immunization services are available by appointment only at the Southern Nevada Health District. To meet social distancing standards, they are limiting the number of people inside clinic.

Call 702-759-0850 for more information.

— Southern Nevada Health District Main Facility, 280 S. Decatur Blvd.; Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

— East Las Vegas Public Health Center, 570 N. Nellis Blvd., Suites D-1 & E-12; Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

— Henderson Public Health Center, 220 E. Horizon Dr., Suites A & C; Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

— Mesquite Public Health Center, 830 Hafen Lane; Tuesday and Thursday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m.

Depending on the specific immunization needed, vaccine costs can vary. While all Nevada students must be fully vaccinated, there are specific requirements for students who are new to Nevada or entering kindergarten, seventh grade or universities. Certain vaccines may not be available at all public health centers.

The health district charges an administration fee of $20 per person for one vaccine and $8 for each additional vaccine.

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