Rock Co Health to host free COVID & flu vaccine clinics at schools

Published: Sep. 30, 2021 at 12:22 PM CDT
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ROCK COUNTY, Wis. (WMTV) - Rock County Public Health officials are providing more opportunities for youth to get their COVID-19 and flu shots.

The health department is partnering with schools in Janesville and Beloit, and Community Health Systems of Beloit, to provide the vaccination clinics at schools.

Those include:

  • Franklin Middle School in Janesville: October 5th 4pm-7pm
  • Marshall Middle School in Janesville: October 18th 4pm-7pm
  • Beloit Turner Middle High School: October 25th 1pm-5:30pm

These are free and open to the public and walk-ins are welcome. COVID vaccines will be available for those 12 years old and up. Flu vaccines will be available for kids and teens ages 6 months to 18 years old.

Minors will need parental consent and will need to be accompanied by a parent or guardian. If you can’t come with your child, call 608-352-6727 to discuss other options.

Health officials say this flu season is expected to be much worse than last year.

“Last year we had a very light flu season in terms of overall cases, however, given relaxed COVID mitigation measures in parts of the country, increased air travel and the return of many students to in-person learning, it’s likely the US will experience a more significant influenza season compared to 2020,” said Seth Loncar with the Rock County Public Health Department.

Since both the flu and COVID-19 are respiratory illnesses, getting both vaccines is vital, according to Loncar.

The flu vaccine doesn’t protect you from COVID-19, but it could reduce flu symptoms that could be confused with COVID-19 symptoms and diagnosing each illness correctly is important, as they are treated differently,” said Loncar.

He also added that more people being vaccinated against the flu will help decrease the amount of people going to health systems for the flu, and lessen the burden on hospitals already coping with COVID patients.

Rock County’s Community Vaccine Clinic at Blackhawk Technical College will also be moving next Tuesday.

Its new location will be the former Rock County Job Center building at 1900 Center Avenue in Janesville. The hours will remain the same. Those are Tuesdays from 11am-5pm and Thursdays from 11am-3pm.

Doses of Pfizer’s booster shots are also widely available in Rock County and throughout the state for those who qualify. Rock County Health officials are encouraging those eligible to get them as soon as they can.

Rock County Health also shared that as of Thursday, almost 56% of Rock County residents have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and nearly 53% are fully vaccinated. 198 people in the county have died of COVID-19.

Hospitalization numbers have decreased slightly with the most recent numbers showing 13 COVID-19 patients currently in hospital care.

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