Time running out for back to school free health screenings

Back To School

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Local health departments are offering Certificate of Vision, Hearing, Dental, and Nutrition screenings at no cost to families.

The Coastal Health District typically screens around 200 students every year during their free health clinics. Nurse Manager Tammi Brown said it’s also a great time to get your kids immunized. She told WSAV, many students they screen who are having difficulties with their studies, often have an unseen health issue that needs to be addressed. With lots of new families moving into the Coastal Empire, Brown said whether you’re studying from home or in school this year, wellness checks should be a top priority.

“So if there’s a hearing deficiency or a vision deficiency, we can refer them and we have our dentist on board, you know she’s doing the dental screenings so if she sees something she can go ahead and make an appointment for them right then.So it’s better that they get these screenings to see if there’s any problems so that they can really focus on school,” Brown said.

The Coastal Health District is aiming to screen at least 40 students each day throughout their free clinics.

The screenings are required for any student entering the Georgia school system, meaning they have never before enrolled in a school in the state.

Normally, a $30 fee would apply when getting the screening through the Coastal Health District.

The health departments in Effingham, Liberty and Long counties are offering the screenings on the following days, though an appointment is required:

  • Chatham County Health Department
    • Monday, Aug. 10, through Friday, Aug. 14
    • Call 912-356-2441 to schedule
  • Effingham County Health Department (802 Hwy. 119 South, Springfield)
    • Tuesday, Aug. 18, and Thursday, Aug. 20
    • Call 912-754-6484 to schedule
  • Glynn County Health Department
    • Monday, Aug. 10 through Friday, Aug. 14
    • To schedule, call 912-264-3961 and choose option 9
  • Liberty County Health Department (1113 E. Oglethorpe Hwy., Hinesville)
    • Monday, Aug. 17, and Tuesday, Aug. 18
    • Call 912-876-2173 to schedule
  • Long County Health Department (584 North Macon Street, Ludowici)
    • Monday, Aug. 10, and Wednesday, Aug. 12, from 8 to 4 p.m.
    • Call 912-545-2107 to schedule
  • McIntosh County Health Department (1335 GA Hwy. 57, Townsend)
    • Thursday, Aug. 13, and Monday, Aug. 17
    • Call 912-832-5473 to schedule

Immunization services will also be available at regular cost. Most insurance is accepted and there are low-cost options for people without insurance.

Children born on or after January 1, 2002, who are attending 7th grade — and new entrants into Georgia schools in grades 8 through 12 — must have received one dose of Tdap vaccine and one dose of meningococcal vaccine.

A new entrant means any child entering a school in Georgia for the first time or entering after having been absent from a school in the state for more than 12 months or one school year.

Health officials say the HPV vaccine is also recommended for both girls and boys starting at ages 11–12 to protect against cancers and other diseases caused by human papillomavirus.

Call your local health department to schedule an appointment.

For more information on childhood immunizations, visit gachd.org/immunizations.

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