Immunizations are inexpensive and easily accessible.

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It seems like the kids just got out of school. I mean like yesterday, right? So, why are the words “back-to-school” in the title? Everyone just settle down and take a deep breath.

All right, you don’t have to buy No. 2 pencils and composition notebooks yet. You can skip past the glue and the crayons for another few weeks. But here’s something you shouldn’t ignore: vaccinations.

See, summertime is the perfect time to get immunizations taken care of. You don’t have to take the kids out of school. They aren’t already sick with the endless series of wintertime colds. Furthermore, if you do it now they’ll be fully protected when they return to their germ-sharing school activities.

And here’s another thing: vaccinations are really important.

Vaccines contain antigens from the disease, but they’re either weakened or dead so they don’t cause the disease. They’re incapacitated enough not to make trouble but present enough for the immune system to recognize them as intruders. And once the antigens are recognized, the immune system makes antibodies to fight them. Then your child is protected from future exposures. Just like that – magic!

Immunizations are inexpensive and easily accessible. They’re so easily accessible that you can march your kids right down to your local Bartell Drugs and have the pharmacist administer the injections right now.

And vaccinations aren’t just for kids. Grownups need tetanus boosters every 10 years, along with shingles and pneumonia vaccines. If you’re thinking of taking an overseas trip, then you’ll want to talk with a specialist in a travel clinic. It might be easier for the kids to endure a poke if Mom or Dad goes first. Why not make it a family outing? Maybe you can even get flu shots while you’re at it. FUN!

So, it’s time to prepare. First, check your records to see what your kids need. Then go to the Bartell Drugs website to learn more about the various requirements for each age and the specifics of what each vaccine does. You can also schedule an appointment while you’re on the site or walk in whenever you’re ready. The pharmacists promise to be patient, gentle, and speedy and they can update your child’s vaccination record in the state database when you’re finished. They can also print out a certificate for your records so you have it on hand for school or whatever camp needs it next. This time you’ll file it away in a safe place where you’re sure to find it, right? Good.

So, get the family’s immunizations taken are of while school is out and you’re not dealing with lunches and drop offs and pick-ups and soccer cleats. Take the kids to the beach, get them good and tired, take them to the pharmacy, get a few shots, then take them to ice cream. Done and done! And next time that camp calls and wants a copy of your child’s immunization records, you’re going to look like parent of the year.

Bartell’s has been the region’s most trusted pharmacy for more than 125 years. Still locally owned and dedicated to the people and families of the Pacific Northwest with 68 convenient neighborhood locations. Bartell Drugs, treating Washington well since 1890.