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SHA’s immunization van looks to provide easy access to vaccinations

The Saskatchewan Health Authority’s immunization van has been making the rounds in North Battleford and Meadow Lake.

Public health clinical supervisor in Meadow Lake, Trina Cappelle says the van has been outfitted as a mobile clinic space for nurses primarily for immunizations for families with children in need of up-to-date vaccinations.

“Some parents have difficulty with transportation or they have other circumstances that make getting into our clinic spaces difficulty, so this way we can bring services to them.’

Cappelle believes the vaccines are the best defence against outbreaks of serious preventable diseases such as measles and meningitis.

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“We know it saves lives and it spares suffering. They’re safe and are effective and essential for a healthy community.  By ensuring immunizations are up-to-date on an individual level, families are also doing their part to protect those who can’t be immunized for age or medical reasons.”

The initiative was specifically created to make immunizations easier for children from two months to six-years-old. Over the past couple years of servicing between North Battleford and Meadow Lake, Capelle says there has been an improvement in immunization rates, especially with vulnerable families.

“We find every year there is more of an uptake of people accessing the van.”

Capelle says people do usually questioned vaccinations which she encourages in order to make an informed decision. She says the nurses will also help residents understand where to find credible resources as some information on the internet might not be research-based.

“A lot of the time its relationships, so, when they get to know us and trust us they’re more likely to accept medical information that will help them make those decisions and the same goes for their doctor and other people in the medical community that they trust.”

The van is available from mid-June to mid-September, spending around three weeks in Meadow Lake and the rest of the time in North Battleford. Residents looking to book an appointment in North Battleford can call 306-441-1364 and 306-240-7099 for those in Meadow Lake.

Scheduling and information on the immunization unit can be found on Facebook as Population Health- Meadow Lake and Population Health – Battlefords.

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