The Virtual Health Office

May/June 2021

Springing into a Safe Summer

Huge shoutout to staff and families who have worked hard to keep our students connected and safe this school year. Our county, and district COVID numbers have decreased dramatically this month! Check out the dashboard: The seasons are changing, Summer is oh so close. Keep scrolling for helpful advice this season, and safe Summer activities!
Big picture

COVID Updates, Vaccinating ages 12 +

  • Butte County to Open Pfizer Vaccinations for 12-15 Age Group

    Following FDA Emergency Use Authorization, Federal and State Safety Review Experts Recommend the Vaccine as Safe and Effective for Protecting Young People 12+

    BUTTE COUNTY, Calif. – Butte County parents and legal guardians can schedule appointments for young people in their family who are aged 12+ to receive the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine using the statewide booking system: This expanded eligibility is effective immediately for all vaccine providers in the county.

    On Wednesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) vaccine safety review panel and the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup determined that the vaccine is safe and effective in protecting this age group against severe illness, hospitalization, and death due to COVID-19 disease, and noted that the vaccination in this age group also appears to protect adolescents from being able to transmit the SARS-CoV-2 virus to others.

    The American Academy of Pediatrics reports that youth now account for 22% of new COVID-19 cases in the U.S. This time last year it was only around 3%. It is important to get young people vaccinated to prevent new SARS-CoV-2 infections and COVID-19 disease from further spread, especially with the increase of SARS-CoV-2 virus variants in Butte County and nearby counties.

    “With COVID-19 cases among youth on the rise, the timing of the Pfizer authorization for ages 12-15 could not be better. While some youth have a less severe or asymptomatic COVID-19 infection, they can still transmit the virus to others,” explained Dr. Robert Bernstein, Butte County Public Health Officer.

    Providers and parents/caregivers can review the Pfizer Vaccine Fact Sheets issued by The Food and Drug Administration (FDA):

    • For Providers:

    • For parents/caregivers

    Residents 18 years and older remain eligible for the Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

    To book a vaccination in Butte County, please visit the BCPH COVID-19 Vaccination website: Those without internet may call the Butte County COVID Call Center for assistance: 552-3050.

  • Residents ages 12 to 15 are eligible for the Pfizer vaccine and must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver and have proof of age at time of appointment. The Pfizer vaccine is administered in two doses taken three weeks (21 days) apart. It has already been safely administered to millions of California adults, including more than 30 percent of 16- and 17-year-olds.

  • As more members of our community receive vaccinations, it is important to stay up to date with quarantine guidance:
Big picture

Preparing for the Heat Wave!

The one hundred degree weather always seems to come so fast. Take these easy steps to round out the school year, and continue at home this Summer:

-Make sure your student is bringing a water bottle daily. Many water fountains are still closed at school.

More helpful hints to keep cool:

-Know the difference between heat exhaustion, and heat stroke and how to treat before symptoms become too severe:

Big picture

Scoliosis Screening

June is Scoliosis Awareness Month! Each year our junior high students are screened for scoliosis. Scoliosis is a common spinal curvature that effects 3-5% of adolescents. Early diagnosis is key! In lieu of this year's modifications, no school scoliosis screenings will be conducted.

  • However, Shriners hospital will be having an event on Friday, May 7, it is being implemented by the hospital itself and will take place at Chico Pediatrics in town. They will be sending their medical director of the spine program, Dr. Rolando Roberto up that day as well. It will also serve as a wonderful opportunity for him to connect with local clinic providers in the community! Schedule an appointment: (916) 453-2334.

If you have concerns, and would like your student to have a screening at school, please contact your school nurse.

Big picture

May is Bike Month

Stay active, and strap on your helmet and join the fun!

-Schools across the district are offering prizes and activities for students riding their bikes to school.

-Bike to work/school week is May 17-23, find out more about how you can participate:

-Check in with Chico Velo for other ways you can participate:

-Local youth mountain biking club, check out their fun events and consider joining:

-Make sure you are correctly wearing your helmet:

Big picture

Summer Activities

-Family Health & Fitness Day: Get outside, check out the list of local parks in the area:

-Fun, educational activities for students:

-CARD is offering many Summer programs for school age students:

-Rock on! Summer Camp at the Terrain Park Climbing Gym:

-Jumping into Fly Camp at RareAir in Chico:

-Funland has multiple Summer Camps, with options for everyone:

-Parks in our area:

-Explore further out: August 4, One year anniversary of the Great American Outdoors Act, and all National Parks are free!

Immunization Updates

Even with current school closures, immunization requirements for admission to school or child care in California for the 2019-2020 and 2020-2021 school year remain in place. Any updates will be posted here:

CDC has just released guidance on maintaining immunization during the COVID-19 pandemic. The information can be found here:

If your student is not current on immunizations you may receive a letter or phone call from the health office. Most clinician's offices and Public Health are still administering immunizations, but many pharmacies have restricted or limited their hours. For an updated list of providers and their current immunization schedule please contact your school nurse.

Big picture

National Mental Health Month

Health expands beyond just physical well being. It is hard to ignore the huge impact COVID has had on our student's mental health. This month is dedicated to focusing on student's mental health-

Did you know?

  • 9.4% of children aged 2-17 years (approximately 6.1 million) have received an ADHD diagnosis.
  • 7.4% of children aged 3-17 years (approximately 4.5 million) have a diagnosed behavior problem.
  • 7.1% of children aged 3-17 years (approximately 4.4 million) have diagnosed anxiety.
  • 3.2% of children aged 3-17 years (approximately 1.9 million) have diagnosed depression.

If you think you or your student could benefit from school services please contact your student's counselor directly or check out Chico Unified's Health and Wellness Resources

For online/ phone support:

  • The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (24/7): Call 1-800-273-8255.



Spring has sprung in Chico, and if you are feeling the symptoms you are not alone!

  • About 25 million Americans have asthma (19 million adults and 6.2 million children)
  • About 32 million Americans have food allergies (26 million adults and 6 million children)
  • About 21 million Americans have hay fever, rhinitis or nasal allergies (20 million adults and 5.6 million children)

There are many resources to keep your student with allergies safe at school and home, such as having emergency or as needed medications in the health office, and working with your school nurse/ nutrition services to have the appropriate allergy free meals at your site.

We invite you to use our resources and tools below to spread awareness throughout May. Here are just a few ways you can be a part of National Asthma and Allergy Awareness Month at home:

Participate in AAFA’s photo contests: More Than Asthma (hosted on our asthma support community) or More Than Food Allergies (hosted on our Kids With Food Allergies support community)

Use social media to tell your story and share information about asthma and allergies.

Attend and invite others to attend our virtual awareness events.

Participate in research and clinical trials to expand treatments.



Melanie Evans, Marsh Junior High , Parkview Elementary, Bidwell Junior High

Tina Collins: Emma Wilson Elementary, Little Chico Creek Elementary, Hooker Oak Elementary, Neal Dow Elementary

Michelle Neves Dean, Chico Senior High, McManus Elementary, Wildflower Elementary

Julie Scalet, Pleasant Valley High, Fairview, Sierra View Elementary

Julie Parker, Loma Vista, Marigold Elementary, Oakdale Elementary and Oakbridge

Cindy Steffen, Citrus Elementary, Rosedale Elementary, Chapman Elementary

Sherry Atkin, Shasta Elementary, Chico Junior High, Forest Ranch