HISD urges parents to get their children vaccinated

With Houston students heading back to school on Monday, the Houston Independent School District and health department is reminding parents to make sure their kids and families are up-to-date on their vaccines.

Since the beginning of the year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports more than 1,200 confirmed measles cases

In the Houston area, six kids have gotten the measles so far this year.

Researchers with the University of Pittsburgh predict Greater Houston could see 500 to a 1,000 If the vaccination rate drops 5 percent in only the schools with populations that currently are under vaccinated. 

"The best way to protect everyone is to protect yourself," said Porfirio Villareal, spokesperson for the Houston Health Department. 

He adds the department says this year they’ve sent letters to schools asking nurses to contact parents whose kids are not up-to-date with their immunizations.

HISD is also doing what it can.

On Friday, the school district held a back-to-school fair complete with free vaccinations. Avenue 360 Health and Wellness was there.

"We have served so many. I know we probably had 60 or 80 people signing in for our vaccination fair," said Deborah Moreno with the organization.

For more information on free or low-cost immunizations, contact the Houston Health Department or Avenue 360.