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Families Endure Long Lines for Back-to-School Vaccines | Education & Schools

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Families Endure Long Lines for Back-to-School Vaccines
Families Endure Long Lines for Back-to-School Vaccines

The lines are long at the Southern Nevada Health District as parents scramble to make sure their children’s vaccinations are up to date.

A child that is not fully immunized cannot attend Clark County schools. With school starting Monday, parents have limited time to get the shots they need. Students from kindergarten through college freshman could be in need of new vaccinations.

“We are one of the few states that have a requirement for hepatitis A. Anyone who is new to the school district needs to get their hep A or they will be turned away. This is going to happen. You are going to be turned away. All seventh graders that do not have T-DAP will be sent home. It is the new mandate from three years ago,” said Veronica Morata-Nichols with the Southern Nevada Health District.

The wait has been as long as an hour and a half for parents and students. Some kids have needed one shot while others have needed as many as six.   

“Not all kids are immunized and we have such a multicultural community. People from all over the world come here and so the potential for exposure is there. And I just feel like it is an appropriate precaution,” said Janelle Ozawa.

Ozawa’s daughter Phoebe is going into seventh grade. They waited an hour and a half to get the shots all seventh graders need. 

The health district charges $16 for one shot and $25 for two. The district will not turn anyone away if they can not afford to pay. 

Some parents are running into an unexpected problem with vaccinations. Through a state audit, the health and school districts recently found some immunizations are out of date if they were given to children before they turned one. They are notifying parents if it has happened to their kids and they will need to get an additional hepatitis B vaccine.

There are other shot clinics going on around the valley at health district offices, including the East Las Vegas Health Clinic on Nellis Boulevard and the Henderson Public Health Center on Lake Mead Parkway. For details on the extended hours at health district clinics checkout southernnevadahealthdistirct.org.

The non-profit Southern Nevada Immunization and Health Coalition is offering free immunizations at several different clinics through the weekend. For more information on those clinics check out  snicnv.org.