Health fair aims to encourage families to get school age kids vaccinated
Pediatric vaccinations in Florida are at an all-time low. To combat that, the Orange County Department of Health is hosting a family health fair this weekend, encouraging more families to get school age kids required vaccinations.
A Florida Department of Health report found only about 91 percent of kindergartners had gotten immunizations required for school enrollment. That’s a ten year low.
Maternal Child Health Division Director Penny Smith said that’s why free vaccinations will be available this weekend at the health fair, along with free health screenings.
“We’re seeing a major decrease in the rates since the pandemic," she said. "This type of event would hopefully reach those populations where we can improve our vaccination rates. This is very important because we're seeing so many different childhood emerging diseases come up and it's largely because kids are not vaccinated.”
Smith says the childhood illnesses they're seeing spikes in include measles and mumps, RSV, and meningitis.
"We will have a health team there that will answer parents’ questions. We have a health team that will be actually administering the vaccines as well as the screenings with the students and they'll be there to answer any questions that they have.”
In order to take advantage of vision, hearing, BMI, scoliosis, and growth and development screenings on site, a parent or guardian must fill out a consent form.
Free lunch will also be provided at the event. The event will be held on Saturday at Xperience Live, 6387 West Colonial Drive, Orlando from 11 am until 3 pm.