Coronaviruses, including the virus responsible for last year’s terrifying Sars-like outbreak of Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease (HFMD), are a real concern among New Yorkers. After it was discovered that HFMD was easily transmitted between people through common objects such as pens, toys, and animal products, NYC health officials began vaccinating children in schools, child care centers, and the general public. A series of aerial and ground vaccination campaigns has managed to reduce infections among very young children, but the disease still persists in adults, resulting in nearly 3,000 hospitalizations and 46 deaths in NYC over the past five years. While New York City health officials recommend vaccination, there is no official licensure process. In order to receive a mandatory vaccination, however, public health officials will require you to bring documentation of your HFMD-infected arms. If you do not possess this documentation, your shot may be cancelled. If this happens, obtain your vaccine replacement right away, as a new order can take up to three weeks to process. These dates may vary from health department to health department and office to office, so it is imperative to carefully plan your trip to see your local health department.
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