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Visit Immunization Clinics Early to Avoid Back-to-School Rush

Visit Immunization Clinics Early to Avoid Back-to-School Rush

TULSA, OK – [July 19, 2015] – The Tulsa Health Department reminds parents of children entering kindergarten or the 7th grade that now is the time to visit immunization clinics to avoid the back-to-school rush that starts every year in August. There are no new immunization requirements for the 2016-2017 school year. 

“Our clinics will be very busy as the first day of school approaches, which is why we recommend families have their child immunized now while there is little to no wait time,” said Priscilla Haynes, Tulsa Health Department division chief of preventive health services. “Immunizations are one of the best ways to protect the health of your child against vaccine preventable diseases.”

This year, THD is offering two new convenient features to help clients during this busy time:

1. Online immunizations records requests
Parents and legal guardians can request immunization records electronically at www.tulsa-health.org/shotrecords. Requests will be processed within 5 business days.

2. Extended hours at two locations in August
Immunization clinics at the James O. Goodwin Health Center, 5051 S. 129 E. Ave., and the Central Regional Health Center, 315 S. Utica, will stay open until 6 p.m. Monday through Thursday. On Fridays these locations will close at 11 a.m.

THD provides immunizations according to the school requirements, CDC recommendations and the childhood and adolescent immunization schedule.

The demand for vaccines turns into a rush before school starts in August because of the booster shots that are due before children enter kindergarten. Most children entering kindergarten are required to receive a second dose of MMR (measles, mumps and rubella vaccine), a fourth dose of polio vaccine, and a fifth does of DTaP (diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis vaccines). A second dose of varicella is recommended at four years of age.

Children transferring into Oklahoma schools from other states may need the hepatitis A vaccine. This vaccine is not required for all states; however, hepatitis A vaccine is required for all Oklahoma students in grades kindergarten through twelfth.

Students entering the 7th grade must receive a Tdap booster. Teens in the 8th through 12th grades must also have one dose of Tdap if they have not received it already.  Tdap protects against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis (whooping cough).  Meningitis and HPV vaccines are also recommended for adolescents at 11 years of age. First-time college enrollees who will reside on campus are required to receive the meningitis vaccine.

Infants, children and adolescents under 18 years of age must be accompanied by their parent or guardian and bring a copy of their current immunizations record to receive immunizations.

THD provides childhood immunizations at no cost to children through age 18 who qualify for the Vaccines for Children (VFC) program.  The following insurances are accepted: Community Care, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Health Choice, Cigna, Medicaid, SoonerCare and Medicare. Individuals with insurance accepted by THD should bring a copy of their insurance card to avoid out-of-pocket expenses.

Childhood immunization clinics are available at the following times and locations:

James O. Goodwin Health Center | 5051 S. 129th E. Ave.
8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Monday - Thursday
8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. Friday

Central Regional Health Center |315 S. Utica
8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Monday - Thursday
8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Friday

North Regional Health and Wellness Center | 5635 N. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Monday - Thursday

8:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. Friday

Collinsville Health Center | 1201 W. Center (918-596-8650)
8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Wednesdays

Sand Springs Health Center | 306 E. Broadway (918-591-6100)
8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Mondays

8:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Wednesdays

For more information about immunization clinics and state immunization requirements please visit www.tulsa-health.org or call 918-582-WELL (9355).

View a complete guide to immunization requirements in Oklahoma for the 2016-2017 school year and more information about Tdap requirements.

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