PORTSMOUTH, Va (WAVY) — Now that the Pfizer vaccine is approved for children ages 5-11, several local school districts are teaming up with local health departments to set up kid clinics.
Virginia Beach, Chesapeake and Norfolk public schools already have plans.
Public Health Emergency Planner Jerry Tucker with the Chesapeake Health Department told WAVY they have some unique plans for distributing the shots.
“One unique thing we are doing in Chesapeake is we’re also implementing the use of therapy dogs,” he said.
He said the trained therapy dogs will be in school clinics starting with the first one scheduled for Nov. 9 from 4-7 p.m. at Greenbrier Middle School.
“Because we found that tends to make the experience a bit more pleasant for the child, you know, having a friendly dog there,” he said.
Norfolk is trying to get to as many students as possible while making it as convenient as possible for parents.
Norfolk Health Department Nurse Manager, Delores Paulding, told WAVY.
“We are going to be at all of the elementary schools the week of the [Nov.] 15,” Pauling said.
Clinics will run during the entire school day from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
“The children will receive a consent form along with the emergency use authorization it will come home with them so the parents just fill out the paperwork, send it back to the child’s school,” Paulding explained.
This morning, Virginia Beach released a list of 12 school clinics that will begin Nov. 8.
Within three hours, a health department spokesperson told WAVY they had 1,000 kids signed up.
Hampton and Newport News Schools have no plans to add clinics for younger students. They encourage parents/guardians to utilize the VDH’s Community Vaccination Clinic located at 13785 Warwick Boulevard if they would like to vaccinate their children between 5 and 11 years old and remind parents vaccines are also available at pediatricians offices and pharmacies.
Celebrate Health care on the Peninsula also has three pop-up clinics scheduled this weekend — with face painting for kids.
There is one on Saturday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Boo Williams Sportsplex.
Both Portsmouth and Suffolk public school districts report they are still in conversations with the department of health on possible clinics in schools. We will let you know if they happen.