PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Inside North Hills High School, life is busy for a teenager.
From school to work to sports, plus relying on mom or dad for transportation.
“If I couldn’t drive, it would be a lot harder to find them. And it was hard to find appointments because I was 17 and a lot of places just weren’t doing under 18 yet,” said Hannah Sciulli, a North Hills High School senior.
In fact, only vaccine clinics using Pfizer will be able to vaccinate Sciulli. Getting a dose is a top priority for her.
“I knew I was going to be traveling this summer and I would be starting college soon — so I wanted to make sure I have it just to be safe,” Sciulli said.
She’s not alone. Her younger sister turns 16 next week and wants the shot too. That’s where the school district and Giant Eagle come into play.
“I think this is kind of the next step, if you will. Our teachers were vaccinated through the statewide J&J initiative a few weeks ago. Now it’s our students’ turn, and we are very excited,” said Heather Pelat, the North Hills School communications director.
On May 11, eligible students 16 years and older who preregistered with parental consent can get a Pfizer shot.
“It’s obviously voluntary clinic and we are not forcing this upon anyone,” Pelat said.
The parents KDKA talked to are excited. Some told KDKA that they hope there will be another clinic in the future if and when the vaccine opens to children under the age of 16.
The convenience factor seems to be the selling point for busy students.
“Some of my friends got their shots at another place and some are getting them at the North Hills clinic and it’s just easier to find the appointments and they are excited having travel coming up and going to college. Just getting vaccinated gives you that peace of mind,” Sciulli said.
Those pre-registration forms are due on May 7. There are 700 eligible students, according to the district, but some may have already got a shot at another location.
Giant Eagle told KDKA that it is in talks with other districts to host similar clinics over the next few weeks.
Schools and districts interested in learning more about partnering on a student vaccination clinic are encouraged to contact Giant Eagle Pharmacy either via phone at 1-800-245-2367 or email at email@example.com.