'Proud that he got it done and over with': Parents get kids vaccinated at back-to-school health fair

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- School is fast approaching, and for some parents, COVID-19 and the Delta strain are added stresses. 

"He’s been prolonging it, I’ve been prolonging it. I’m like today’s the day."

Kelly Suggs brought her 15-year-old son to the Milwaukee Health Department's "Back-to-School Health Fair" on Friday, July 30. 

"I’m proud that he got it done and over with," said Suggs as she waited for her son to finish getting the vaccine. 

The health department holds the health fair annually, but this year there was an added COVID-19 vaccine site and reusable masks were added to the school supply list of things given out to families. 

"Both of our back-to-school health care events are offering the full complement of childhood vaccines in addition to COVID vaccine for both kids 12 and up and their adults," said Heather Paradis, the medical director with the Milwaukee Health Department. 

Friday's event was held at the Barack Obama School of Career and Technical Education. On Aug. 6 another one will be held at the Southside Health Center. 

Health leaders are concerned about the upward trend in COVID cases since the Delta variant, and they fear there could be a real surge this fall as kids go back to school. Still, Milwaukee County Health Commissioner Kirsten Johnson is confident kids can go back to school safely. 

“We’ve learned that you can mitigate the spread of COVID in the classroom," said Johnson. "It’s an environment where kids can wear masks, they can be separated, they could be outdoors for recess. It’s a controlled environment, so we know the kids go back to school safely.”

Johnson says vaccines are a big part of that too. She urges anyone 12 years old and up to get vaccinated. 

The health department handed out tickets to the Milwaukee County Zoo for anyone who got their vaccine or showed proof of immunization at the event. 

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