District 4 Public Health urges parents and caregivers not to wait in getting their children’s vaccinations and health screenings for the new school year starting in early August.
State law requires children attending a nursery, childcare, pre-kindergarten, Head Start program, or private or public school (kindergarten –12th grade) to have three key documents on file when enrolling in a Georgia school for the first time:
- Georgia Immunization Certificate (Form 3231): If your child will be attending a Georgia school for the first time, your local health department or physician’s office can let you know the specific immunizations your child needs. They will then provide you with a completed Form 3231 after administering the appropriate vaccines to your child. If your child has received vaccines in another state, you may need to bring proper documentation from that state. “First-time” students not only are those entering childcare, pre-K, kindergarten, etc., but also refers to older students who are attending school in Georgia for the first time (or who have been absent from a Georgia school for more than 12 months or one school year).
- Georgia Certificate of Vision, Hearing, Dental, and Nutrition Screening (Form 3300): All children enrolled in a pre-kindergarten program or public school must have this certificate on file at their school. Your local health department or physician can conduct these screenings and complete this form.
- Certified Birth Certificate: You also will need to provide your child’s school with a certified birth certificate. If your child was born in any county in Georgia, you can obtain a certified copy of their birth certificate at District 4’s Vital Records Offices at our health departments in Carroll, Meriwether, Spalding, Troup, and Upson counties. You will need to show your Georgia driver’s license or state identification card, and either parent may pick up certificates.
Parents of rising seventh- and eleventh-graders will need to make sure their child has received the following vaccines so they may submit the required updated Form 3231 to their child’s school:
- Rising Seventh-Grader Immunizations: Children born on or after January 1, 2002, who are 1) attending seventh grade or 2) “first-time” students enrolling in Georgia schools in grades 8 through 12 must have received one dose of Tdap vaccine and one dose of meningococcal vaccine. (A “first-time” student means any child entering any school in Georgia for the first time or entering after having been absent from a Georgia school for more than 12 months or one school year.)
- Rising Eleventh-Grader Immunizations: Effective July 1, 2021, children 16 years of age and older who are entering the 11th grade (including “first-time” students) must have received one booster dose of the meningococcal conjugate vaccine (MCV4), unless their initial dose was administered on or after their 16th birthday. MCV4 helps prevent meningococcal disease, a bacterial infection that can be very dangerous.
The HPV vaccine is also recommended for both girls and boys at ages 11–12 to protect against cancers and other diseases caused by human papillomavirus.
To schedule immunizations or health screenings at any District 4 county health department, please call 1-800-847-4262. Appointments are available on weekdays throughout the summer. Parents in Troup, Pike, and Fayette are encouraged to schedule their child’s appointment during special back-to-school immunization and screening events hosted by their county health department:
Thursday, June 16, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Thursday, July 14, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Wednesday, August 3, 9 a.m – 4:30 p.m.
No appointment is required for the Pike County Health Department’s Back-to-School event. Hot dogs will be served while they last, and they also will hand out a limited number of book bags and school supplies.
Wednesday, July 27, 8:15 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Monday – Thursday, July 25-28, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Fees for immunizations and screenings will vary. Payments for health services or birth certificates may be made by cash, MasterCard or Visa. Medicaid covers vision and hearing screenings and immunizations, and we accept most insurance plans. For more information, please call 1-800-847-4262.