Pediatricians remind parents to take kids to the doctor for vaccines

Published: Jul. 13, 2020 at 6:23 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) - The coronavirus has been keeping many kids and families home, but pediatricians are now sounding the alarm to remind everyone to stay up to date on vaccines.

“Offices tend to get very very busy in the several weeks before back to school, so it makes sense to call the office now,” PM Pediatrics Senior Medical Advisor Dr. Christina Johns said.

Dr. Johns is hoping parents will bring their kids to the doctor for routine visits, and not setback their physicals.

“The last thing that we want to do when we’re dealing with this pandemic is to inadvertently create another one by having a cohort of children who are delayed on their immunization,” Dr. Johns said.

The Vaccines for Children Program provides vaccines to 50% of children in the U.S. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the number of vaccines ordered for the program dropped significantly.

“Initially in the pandemic when the states were all locked down there was significant concern amongst parents about going to in see their pediatrician,” Dr. Johns said. “I think now patients, parents, and families are starting to get back.”

Dr. Johns is strongly urging parents to bring their kids to the pediatrician now, before the back to school year rush begins.

“Whether or not schools will be opening in some format or not, it’s important for kids - especially younger children who are under the age of two - to stay on that schedule,” said Dr. Johns.

When you do make it back to the doctor, your visit may look a little different.

“Many offices, in fact, are spacing out the timing of their patients: So well kids will be seen in the morning for those routine vaccinations, especially important for children under two, and then reserving the afternoon for the sick visit,” Dr. Johns said.

Dr. Johns also said that if you’re concerned about going into a doctors office, she said to just call your pediatrician and ask about the accommodations they’ve made to keep you and your child safe.

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