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The first day of school is right around the corner, and health and school officials are reminding families of new immunization requirements for kindergartners and seventh-graders.

The new requirements in place require students entering kindergarten to have two doses of varicella vaccine, and students entering seventh grade will be required to have one Tdap, or Tetanus-diphtheria-attenuated pertussis, and one meningitis, or MCV4, vaccination.

William Leebel, spokesman for the Charles County Department of Health, said the new requirements were established by the Maryland State Department of Health and Mental Hygiene due to recent national outbreaks.

The vaccinations are required in order for children to attend school.

Leebel said children without the vaccinations can enter school the first day provided they provide proof of an appointment to receive the vaccination within 20 days.

Leebel said the health department is assisting with vaccinations by offering them free of charge at several clinics the department is hosting.

The clinics have been going on since April and will continue through September.

All clinics with the exception of today’s clinic at the Western County Family Medical Center at the Nanjemoy Community Center will be held at the health department in White Plains.

Today’s clinic in Nanjemoy is unique because all vaccination requirements will be at no cost to families. Sports physicals will be provided at nominal cost.

The Nanjemoy clinic also will provide free dental kits and information for children, information on health education for both children and adults, and information about Charles County Public Schools and the health department. The clinic will be held from noon to 7 p.m. at the Nanjemoy center at 4375 Port Tobacco Road. The clinic also will provide free HIV tests.

Appointments are welcome but not required. Call 301-246-4860.

Special vaccination clinics at the health department where the new vaccinations will be provided at no cost are scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Aug. 9 and 3 to 7 p.m. Aug. 28 and Sept. 4 and 11.