Maine is going to support free coronavirus vaccine clinics in schools and promote education about vaccines as part of a push to protect schools from the virus.
The Maine Department of Health and Human Services and Maine Department of Education said Wednesday they’re working on the effort in the wake of new guidance from the federal government. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have recommended universal masking in schools.
Maine officials said the Maine CDC will connect schools with hospitals, doctors and others to support the vaccine clinics. Officials said the state will also send letters with information about the virus and the vaccine to school administrators, parents and community health providers.
The Maine health department said the state will also begin collecting school staff vaccination rates starting Sept. 1 and posting them publicly by the middle of the month. The department said it will also begin posting vaccination rates of people age 19 and younger by school administrative unit every two weeks starting in the middle of August.
Health department commissioner Jeanne Lambrew said the effort is about “supporting schools in offering vaccination clinics, helping communities understand the benefits of these safe and effective vaccines, and equipping school leaders with information to make the best decisions for their communities.”