ST. CLOUD -- Local health officials say despite the pandemic, don't forget to keep up with your child's vaccinations.

The Minnesota Department of Health is raising concerns over kids, especially young kids, who not getting their shots as doctor visits have been delayed due to the pandemic.

CentraCare Health has been working with families to help reschedule those appointments to make sure their youngest patients are being taken care of during this time.

Dr. Jill Amsberry is a Pediatrician at the CentraCare Health Plaza. She says parents don't have to be afraid to bring their kids in for a well-child visit as CentraCare has separate sites to care for kids who are sick.

We feel fortunate in our community to have things set up where our sick kids can get the care they need from a pediatric provider and our well-kids have a safe place to go to get their care.

She says they are only seeing well-child patients who are 2-years-old or younger inside the clinic, but will see older patients if there is a health concern.

Amsberry says for older kids needing vaccinations, they have been offering "drive-thru vaccines."

As we are rescheduling patients if they are do for vaccinations we are letting them know this service is available. We are running through our vaccine list to identify patients who are behind on their vaccines and calling them.

She says so far it's been successful and they continue to see more families taking advantage of this service.

Amsberry says a possible risk of not getting your child's vaccinations, could lead to another pandemic.

Measles for example, if we don't have a majority of our population vaccinated or immune, we are at a significantly increased risk in developing another infectious disease within our community. So it's critical that people don't delay their vaccination.

Amsberry says they are taking all safety precautions to make sure patients and staff are protected, such as screenings at the door, and wearing masks and gloves.

CentraCare says if you have concerns regarding your child's health you can reach out to your provider via MyChart or through Telehealth.

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