BOSTON — The city of Boston announced it will hold a free back-to-school vaccination clinic to encourage covid vaccines for students headed back to school.
The event will be held at White Stadium in Franklin Park on Saturday between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
The city plans to give out free backpacks, school supplies, and $75 gift cards to whoever gets a shot.
“Getting kids vaccinated is the right thing to do,” said Boston Health Commissioner Dr. Bisola Ojikutu. “We want kids and adults, of course, our teachers and staff members in schools to be protected as we move indoors and enter the winter months when we expect transmission rates to increase.”
Ojikutu said the city noticed a 63% increase in the amount of virus in wastewater within the last 14 days.
“None of this is surprising. We anticipated that as we entered fall and increased indoor gatherings and return to school that our cases would increase,” said Ojikutu.
About 75% of Bostonians are fully vaccinated but the number for children ages 5-11 is around 50%.
The CDC changed its booster eligibility earlier this month. As it stands, anyone 12 years or older can receive the new omicron booster no matter how many boosters you have had before, as long as your last shot was at least two months ago.
Christopher Mangles works in infectious prevention at Fenway Health and said evolving COVID variants require evolving boosters.
“As the mutation occur the older versions of the vaccine may not be as effective and that is what we have seen with omicron,” said Mangles.
Saturday’s vaccination event is free and does not require registration. The city said the $75 gift cards are in limited supply.