As the pandemic situation continues to improve and public health measures lift, the Grey Bruce Health Unit is resuming elementary school immunization clinics for routine vaccinations.
Hepatitis B, Meningococcal and HPV-9 (Human Papillomavirus) vaccines will be the only immunizations offered at the clinics. Consent forms were sent home with students this week.
The Health Unit says that “research is very clear about the safety profile of these vaccines. They are effective at preventing serious diseases and/or their complications, such as hepatitis (liver infection), encephalitis and meningitis (infection of the brain and its lining) and several types of cancer, including cervical and oral cancers.”
“The Grey Bruce Health Unit is pleased to be returning to schools to offer these important vaccinations. Maintaining high immunization rates helps to support community immunity, which ensures everyone is protected,” says GBHU Physician Consultant Dr. Rim Zayed.
In-school routine vaccination clinics for Grade 7 students were put on hold when the COVID-19 emergency began in March 2020 and health unit staff were redeployed.
Public health will be undertaking a strategic, targeted approach to address the backlog of students requiring their Grade 7 vaccinations and to ensure the safety of this age group.
The clinics will begin March 29 and continue into April. The health unit will begin by providing the vaccines to students currently in Grade 7 and Grade 8 pupils who have not yet received the vaccinations.
Later in the spring, public health is planning to hold clinics for Grade 9 students who received only one dose or no doses of the Grade 7 vaccinations.
Ontario’s publicly funded immunization schedule includes the single-dose Meningococcal vaccine and two-dose Hepatitis B and HPV-9 vaccines for children in Grade 7.
No COVID-19 vaccinations will be given at any of the in-school routine vaccination clinics. COVID-19 vaccines are only available at community vaccination clinics, from primary care providers and at participating pharmacies.