Farmington schools hosts immunization clinic, large number of students need required shots

Joshua Kellogg
Farmington Daily Times
  • The clinic will be administrating the Tetanus, Diptheria and Pertussis (TDAP) and Meningococcal Men (ACWY), two required vaccines for students entering seventh grade by the state of New Mexico.
  • District officials learned about 40 percent of seventh and eighth graders don’t have required immunizations.
  • The New Mexico Department of Health is hosting a Farmington Municipal Schools back to school immunization clinic from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 14 at the district’s central office at the 30th Street Education Center at 3401 E. 30th St. in Farmington.

FARMINGTON — Farmington Municipal Schools is hosting a series of immunization clinics because about 40 percent of seventh- and eighth-graders are not up to date on required vaccines.

The New Mexico Department of Health is hosting a Farmington Municipal Schools back to school immunization clinic from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 14 at the district’s central office at the 30th Street Education Center at 3401 E. 30th St. in Farmington.

The clinic will administer the Tetanus, Diptheria and Pertussis (TDAP) and Meningococcal Men (ACWY), two vaccines that are required for students entering seventh grade by the State of New Mexico, according to Farmington schools Director of Nursing Services Cathy McDonald.

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McDonald told The Daily Times students are behind in getting those required immunizations due to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and this year.

Rita Abboud, a certified nurse practitioner at the San Juan County Public Health Office in Farmington, said in an email there is a concern for a possible outbreak of communicable diseases.

“There is a concern that with children returning to in-person school next month, there is the potential for outbreaks of communicable diseases like measles, chicken pox, and pertussis,” Abboud said. “The best way to prevent these outbreaks is to ensure school children are current on all of their immunizations.”

The 30th Street Education Center at 3401 E. 30th St. in Farmington.

District officials produced a preliminary report using immunization numbers from the district’s computer software Powerschool and learned about 40 percent of seventh- and eighth-graders don’t have required immunizations.

McDonald said that was a huge number of students who are missing their required immunizations.

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“That's one of the reasons that we are offering this clinic is so parents can go ahead and get a jumpstart prior to school starting,” McDonald said.

Parents or guardians are asked to bring in the shot record of each student.

McDonald recommends people call her to schedule an appointment by calling 505-324-9840 Ext. 3106.

She stressed that walk-ins will be accepted, including those without their shot record. She added it will take additional time for staff to locate the required paperwork if no shot record is provided.

The clinic will also offer the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine and the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine. The Pfizer vaccine is free for students 12 years old and older.

Students who wish to get the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine can obtain the consent forms on the district’s website at https://bit.ly/3e4cALk.

The district plans more immunization clinics in the future, including one in about three weeks to provide the second dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine.

McDonald said are other avenues available to obtaining immunizations, including a student’s primary medical provider and through organizations like Presbyterian Medical Services.

Joshua Kellogg covers breaking news for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4627 or via email at jkellogg@daily-times.com.

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