Posted by Colby Rogers
RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - To meet state requirements for rising sixth-graders, Richmond public schools are administering the free Tdap vaccine to students.
The vaccination immunizes against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis, or whooping cough.
Just before kids go back to school in September there's usually a last-minute rush to get children up to date on their immunizations. Richmond school officials say they are hoping to avoid the scramble this year by offering the vaccination at various schools around the city.
So far Richmond Schools have a long list to immunize. At Fairfield Court Elementary alone, more than 40 rising sixth-graders have turned in consent forms and were in line Wednesday to receive the vaccination.
"This is a tetanus, diphtheria, pertussis vaccine," said Charlene Rodgers of Richmond Public Schools Nursing Services. "It is really for pertussis containment, which is whooping cough. This is why we're giving it because whooping cough has been on the rise over the last several years."
Health officials say all of the illnesses covered by the vaccine are highly contagious and can spread easily in a school environment.
A list of dates and locations for the clinic over the next few month can be found on NBC12.com here.
School officials say students that miss a clinic at their school you can go to another location. However, parents will need to call ahead first at 780-7801.