The city of Nashua is taking on the issue of childhood immunizations, after the CDC reported a nationwide drop in vaccinations as a result of families staying home due to COVID-19.
This evening, Nashua is hosting the first of three free mobile vaccination clinics for children in the Greater Nashua area.
Kim Bernard, the city’s chief public health nurse, says they’re trying to reach as many children as possible before school starts up in the fall.
“With everything else going on right now, we want to be able to be a resource for parents to start thinking about vaccinations again,” she says.
The city is specifically gearing the mobile clinics to the middle school population, who need up-to-date immunizations to enter the 7th grade.
“Whether school happens remotely or in the classroom, it’s important that children get their immunizations on time,” says Bernard.
In line with national trends, the city’s Division of Public Health has also seen a decrease in childhood vaccinations.
During the first six months of 2019, Nashua's immunization clinic vaccinated 95 children between ages 0 to 12. In the first six months of 2020, they vaccinated only 55 children -- a decrease of around 42 percent. Vaccinations among adolescents age 13 to 18 also decreased by 43 percent.
The clinics will be drive-through, and English and Spanish-speaking staff will be available at each location.
Immunizations available include chickenpox, Meningitis, Polio, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Tdap, Tetanus, MMR, and HPV.
The first clinic will be held Friday, July 31, from 5 to 7 p.m. at Dr. Crisp Elementary School in Nashua, with two additional mobile clinics scheduled for August.