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Health Fair set for this weekend

August 1, 2018

Only time will tell if this weekend’s Back-to-School Health Fair will see a dramatic rise in children requiring immunization shots due to Lake Havasu City’s shortage of pediatricians.

Today’s News-Herald reported seven months ago that pediatricians in Havasu were in short supply, causing caseloads for existing pedestrians to grow and future appointments difficult to book. The shortage reportedly caused some families to travel outside Havasu for pediatric care.

The Havasu Community Health Foundation’s annual event – formerly known as Havasu Stick’em – aims to reduce the scare factor for children up to 18 years-old while receiving free immunization shots for the upcoming school year. Physical exam vouchers and bike helmets for the first 100 kids, vision screenings and dental information also will be offered at the event, according to Joni Spencer, an administrative assistant at the foundation.

“People that are going to do the vision screenings, representatives of the foundation’s new food bank, Milemarkers and a number of different organizations in town will all provide some kind of fun event,” she said. “There’s going to be a spinning wheel, a ring toss, rock painting and all those kinds of things will be going on.”

The free Back-to-School Health Fair will be held from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday at the Aquatic Center. Free Family Swim Day with free hot dogs provided by the Elks Lodge will follow the health fair from noon to 4 p.m.

While Spencer said she does not know if they will see an increase this year, she stated that the foundation is prepared for about 300 children based on previous years’ attendance. She added that the Mohave County Department of Public Health – which is providing the free immunizations – has been regularly providing children with immunizations.

“I’m going to assume that it’s going to balance out,” Spencer said.

Parents who did not pre-register their children can still attend Saturday’s event, according to Spencer. They are required to provide previous immunization records and insurance identification for any insured child, she said.

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