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Fill-in-Blank News Release for County Health Departments
For Release: June __ 2004
County Health Departments Promote “Immunize for Healthy Lives”
“The _____ County Health Department needs your help to improve childhood immunization rates in Oklahoma. Don’t wait until the last minute to start planning for your children’s back-to-school needs, especially their vaccinations,” said _____ County Health Department Administrative Director _____.
“Immunize for Healthy Lives” is the message being used to launch a public education campaign to improve childhood vaccinations. The Oklahoma State Department of Health, McDonald’s, and the Oklahoma Caring Van are joining county health departments and local Immunization Coalitions to launch a back-to-school immunization drive. The goal is to increase the number of children fully immunized in Oklahoma.
The campaign will feature Oklahoma’s First Lady Kim Henry in public service announcements and news articles that encourage parents to stay on schedule with their children’s immunizations.
Staying on schedule with immunizations, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Oklahoma State Department of Health, is the best defense against dangerous childhood diseases such as measles and whooping cough. Immunization field staff will be reminding parents to get their children immunized through telephone callbacks, written reminders and by visiting day care centers to help get the message out to parents.
Participating Oklahoma McDonald’s restaurants will be providing immunization information to their customers on tray liners and bag stuffers. McDonald’s will also offer a flyer or immunization schedule placemat during the campaign. In addition, McDonald’s will provide Oklahoma’s participating doctors’ offices and county health departments with coupons good for free “Apple Dippers” to reward children for getting immunized. Apple Dippers are a new product at McDonald’s featuring slices of fresh apples with a low-fat caramel dipping sauce.
The Caring Van, sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Oklahoma, will assist by setting up special immunization clinics to encourage parents to get their children immunized. The Caring Vans are based out of Oklahoma City and Tulsa and have the flexibility of providing on-site immunizations for child care centers, schools and other facilities across the state. Clinics scheduled in this area are: __________, __________, and __________.
“I hope all parents and caregivers will join us in our efforts to protect the health of children and immunize their children against 11 preventable dangerous diseases,” _____ said.
The following immunizations are required for children entering day care or school:
In addition, beginning this fall, first-time college enrollees who plan to live on campus will be required to get a meningitis vaccination.
For more information about childhood immunizations, or to find out about the meningitis vaccination for college students, call the _____County Health Department at (phone number).
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