Schools to host vaccination clinics

A child receives a COVID-19 vaccination in Chicago. Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune

LOWVILLE — In addition to providing full courses of COVID-19 vaccinations and booster shots, county public health departments are working on plans to get the recently approved pediatric doses of the Pfizer vaccine to children ages 5 to 11 years old as soon as possible.

St. Lawrence County already has one clinic scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 13 at St. Lawrence University, 100 Park St., Canton.

People can register for either the pediatric vaccine or the full Pfizer first shot designated for people 12 years and older offered during that clinic.

To make things fun and to create some distraction from the shots for children, college mascots, K-9s and firefighters teaching fire prevention will be at the clinic, the county’s interim Public Health Director Jolene F. Munger said.

To get as many children as possible vaccinated, Ms. Munger said she and her team will be doing 20 in-school clinics around the county in nine days.

“Nobody ever said St. Lawrence isn’t ambitious,” she said, “but in order to get all the kids done with their second doses at school, you have to get them done by the 30th, otherwise you run into winter break.”

Registration is required for both versions of the vaccine and can be completed on the public health website, wdt.me/SLCHealth, or by calling 315-386-2325.

Jefferson County will be following the same plan that worked with older school-age kids, according to Public Health Planner Faith Lustik, including partnering with the North Country Family Health Center.

“For the 12- to 17-year-olds, we went to different locations in the county that were centrally located for maybe two schools and that worked really well,” Ms. Lustik said. “North Country Family Health Center is going to do some of the clinics and we’ll do some of those clinics.”

Dates will be set for the clinics as soon as anticipated directives are issued from the state Department of Health.

After the school clinics have been held, shots for 5- to 11-year-olds will be available at the Public Health offices in Watertown.

Ms. Lustik said the department is also hoping pediatricians will offer the shots in their offices.

In Lewis County, pediatric Pfizer vaccination clinics will be held at all five schools beginning on Nov. 15, Public Health Director Ashley Waite said in an email.

Parents will be notified of the schedule and registration information directly by the school.

For more information about the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccination for children, visit county public health websites, or the free “COVID-19 Vaccine Ask a Doc” service on the Fort Drum Regional Health Planning Organization website, fdrhpo.org.

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