Long lines for immunizations an annual event, health officials say

Long lines for immunizations an annual event, health officials say
Longview News-Journal
News

POSTED: Friday, August 16, 2013 - 11:00am

UPDATED: Friday, August 16, 2013 - 11:14am

Looking out at a growing line of people waiting to get back-to-school immunizations Thursday, staff members at the Gregg County Health Department said some things will never change.

It’s human nature to postpone the unpleasant until the very last minute. After all, who wants to see their child wince from the pain of a vaccination needle?

Still, the staff noted, the health department has undergone a lot of changes through the years that include how it is funded, a decline in patients and new vaccination requirements.

The department has received an annual grant of $197,000 from the Texas Department of State Health Services since 2008 to fund the vaccination clinics. It is free to the county, costing no local taxpayer dollars.

“Before then the program was very small. DSHS only provided the vaccines but no supporting elements,” said Bettie Clark, Gregg County Health Department’s immunization program manager.

All components of the immunization program are covered through the grant, including staff salaries and benefits for three full-time employees, supplies and computer programs.
 

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