NC health departments encourage vaccines ahead of school year

Published: Aug. 11, 2022 at 7:24 PM EDT
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GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) - School districts across the east are preparing to welcome students back, and with a return to the classroom, comes the risk of viruses spreading. That’s why the NCDHHS is encouraging parents to get kids vaccinated before their first day back. The effort is part of what they call a Know Before You Go campaign to gear up not only for school but also for upcoming holidays.

Covid-19 vaccines are not a requirement in schools, but health departments like Pitt County, encourage them.

“People are not getting as sick, and they’re not dying as they were when we first had the public health emergency announced in March 2020. However, I do not think we should forget the lessons that we learned over the past two years. We need to remember the heartache that was caused by communicable diseases,” said Pitt County Health Department Nursing director Kimberly Hardy. She also explained that the vaccine won’t prevent you from contracting the virus, but it will make your case more manageable.

“Covid-19 vaccination does decrease the severity of illness, and that is one thing that we need to remember. I know I hear many people complain about getting Covid-19 after they’ve been vaccinated, but the disease is not nearly as severe,” said Hardy. She said the number of vaccinated kids is far lower than they’d like it to be.

“There has been a decrease of about 10 to 35% decrease in children being up to date on their vaccinations, so with that in mind, that further complicates it and increases the susceptibility of children for vaccine preventable diseases,”

Pitt County has a drive-up vaccination clinic coming up. It’s on August 23rd from 2:30 to 6:30. There are also clinics on the following dates:

September 13: 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

September 15: 8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.

September 27: 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

September 29: 8:30 – 12 p.m. and 1 – 4:30 p.m.

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