Clinic facilities

SF Vaccination Clinic for School Age Children Available at Bayview, General Hospital Clinics

Families showed up to the shiny new Southeast Family Health Center on Keith Street in the Bayview neighborhood on Saturday to update their children on vaccinations for everything from polio to COVID-19. And it didn’t hurt that it came with free waffles from the food truck out front, either.

Veronica Campos stood in line to eat with her daughter Sophia after getting her the necessary vaccinations for her fifth year at George Washington Elementary School in San Francisco.

“It was so convenient,” said Campos, who lives nearby in the Mission District. She said she was in a rush to get her daughter’s required vaccinations, which include polio shots and other vaccines, with the start of the school year.

She said the health center at 2401 Keith St. came up after a quick Google search and she was able to walk in without an appointment and have her daughter vaccinated in about 20 minutes. She will definitely return in the future, she said.

The San Francisco Department of Public Health is offering free food during the back-to-school vaccination clinic.

Felix Uribe/Special at The Chronicle

“Besides clean water, vaccinations are the single most important public health intervention that has prolonged life and reduced disease for human beings,” San Francisco health worker Susan Philip said Saturday in front of the glazed clinic. “We are here today to make sure our youngest San Francisco residents are here to get all the preventative shots they need.”

The free back-to-school vaccination clinic will be open again on August 27 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Another clinic will also be available Monday, August 22 through Friday, August 26 at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital in Building 5 on the 6th floor from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Children in transitional kindergarten and kindergarten through 12th grade are offered free vaccines to meet school requirements.

Philip said the state’s vaccine requirements for attending school do not include COVID-19 shots, but it is strongly encouraged. “My message is that everyone should get all the COVID vaccines they are eligible for,” she said.

South East Health Center Medical Director Dr Keith Seidel joined Philip and agreed that the polio cases occurring on the East Coast underscore the importance of people getting vaccinated against the disease and other preventable diseases.

San Francisco Department of Public Health Officer Dr. Susan Philip talks about the importance of childhood immunizations during the immunization clinic.

San Francisco Department of Public Health Officer Dr. Susan Philip talks about the importance of childhood immunizations during the immunization clinic.

Felix Uribe/Special at The Chronicle

Philip said no polio has been detected in San Francisco’s sewage, unlike in New York where it has started to appear.

“When children enter (transitional kindergarten) or kindergarten, they must be up to date on their measles, mumps and rubella, they must be up to date on the vaccine for polio, tetanus, diphtheria and whooping cough as well,” Seidel said.

“A second set of shots should be done when people enter seventh grade,” he added. “That’s when they get their next tetanus shots. These must be carried out on the authority of the State.

Seidel said families can walk into the walk-in clinic without a reservation and see a nurse, check their immunization records and get needed shots. Anyone can come regardless of their insurance status, he said.

The site also offers large-scale primary care, he added, from prenatal care to geriatric care. The site also offers other services such as acupuncture.

“We have therapists on site. We have a full range of behavioral health services. These are wraparound services,” Seidel said.

Chase DiFeliciantonio is a writer for the San Francisco Chronicle. Email: chase.difeliciantonio@sfchronicle.comTwitter: @ChaseDiFelice