With spring just around the corner, public health nurses at the Floyd County Health Department are already encouraging parents to beat the coming summer’s back-to-school rush by simply walking in or making an appointment now for their incoming 7th grader to get the adolescent pertussis (whooping cough) booster vaccination, called “Tdap,” and the MCV4 adolescent meningococcal vaccination. These two immunizations are required by law for all students born on or after January 1, 2002, and entering, advancing or transferring into 7th grade and any “new entrant” into 8th -12th grades in Georgia.
“Spring Break for Floyd County and Rome City Schools is March 27 through March 31, and that week would be an ideal time for parents to get it done and get it out of the way if you can’t do it sooner,” says health department Nurse Manager Alison Watson. “We’ll give you the Georgia Immunization Certificate you need for proof of both vaccinations and suggest you make a copy, keep it or the original in a safe place and go ahead and send the other to the school. Check this requirement for all public and private schools off your to-do list today.”
Students transferring into 8th through 12th grades, from either out of state or within Georgia, are also subject to these 7th grade vaccination requirements, and Watson advises their parents to satisfy them early, too.
Georgia Preteen Vaccination Awareness Week is March 13- 17. Watson suggests “this is a good reminder for parents to speak with health department nurses or your physician to find out if your preteen is up-to-date regarding preteen immunizations, particularly Georgia’s pertussis and meningococcal requirements for incoming seventh-grade students.”
The CDC currently recommends the following vaccines for preteens and teens:
- Tetanus, Diphtheria and Pertussis (Tdap)
- Influenza (flu)
- Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
- Meningococcal Disease (MCV4)
Watson reminds that the health department, 16 East 12th Street, Rome, is a walk-in clinic, open Monday through Friday, for immunizations and other services. Hours are:
Monday – Wednesday 8 am – 11:30 am and 1 pm to 4:30 pm
Thursday 8 am – 11:30 am and 1 pm to 6 pm
Friday 8 am – 1:30 pm
The health department accepts private insurance, Medicaid, Wellcare, Amerigroup, Cigna, Aetna, United Health State Health Benefit Plan, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia and cash.
Call the health department at 706-295-6123 or visit http://nwgapublichealth.org/counties/floyd/or https://www.facebook.com/FloydCountyHealthDepartment/for additional information.
For more information on preteen and teen immunizations, visit https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/parents/diseases/teen/index.html