Springfield Public Schools & Jordan Valley Clinic team up for mobile immunization units

Published: May. 20, 2020 at 11:25 AM CDT
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In-person classes this fall may still be up in the air, but the requirements for your kids' immunizations are not.

Springfield Public Schools (SPS) is looking at a new way to make sure students get them done in time for the 2020 school year by teaming up with Jordan Valley Community Health to create mobile immunization units.

SPS did a trial run of this system last week at Reed Academy where they vaccinated 60 students in just four hours.

Parents start by filling out permission forms while they're waiting in line. Then, when they get to the mobile unit, the child gets out of the vehicle and heads into the mobile unit for their vaccine. They'll come back to the car when they're finished.

SPS does not have a set schedule of these mobile clinics right now. Instead, SPS nurses will notify families with children who need updated vaccines to let them know if a mobile clinic is happening at a school near them.

The Director of Health Services says she hopes this eases parents' concerns about potential germ exposure. "We felt like this would be another way that would help shorten it, so they're just stepping out of their car and going into a mobile unit, getting it done, and stepping back into the car," said Jean Grabeel. "They're not having to go through a whole clinic setting, so we thought this might make people a little more comfortable."

Grabeel said the employees are all wearing masks, but it is optional for children. The inside of the mobile units are also being cleaned between every child visit.

As for the usual school-wide immunization clinics SPS hosts every year, Grabeel said she does think those will be able to go on as scheduled with appointments. Grabeel added that if there is a coronavirus vaccine in the future, she hopes to work with the health department to provide on-site vaccinations at Springfield schools.

The only exceptions by the state of Missouri for students to not get vaccinated are for religious purposes or other health concerns.