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Saturday, November 26, 2022
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Health Fairs Will Offer Free Screenings for Children

Free children’s health fairs will offer one-stop medical screenings for youngsters on St. Croix and St. Thomas.

The Children’s Health and Wellness Fair will be on St. Croix beginning at 9 a.m. Friday at the Gov. Juan F. Luis Hospital & Medical Center, and 9 a.m. Nov. 16th at the Sugar Estate Head Start Complex on St. Thomas.

Entitled “Healthy Children Are Happy Children, Help Your Young Child Stay Healthy!” the half-day fair provides pediatric services for children age birth to five years who are not in regular licensed child care facilities or Head Start, or whose parents are not able to schedule regular physicals for their children. Some of the services include dental screenings, vision and hearing screening, and medical check-ups, flu shots and review of records for immunizations.

The event is sponsored by the Early Childhood Advisory Committee of the Governor’s Children and Families Council, in partnership with government and non-profit agencies.

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The Department of Education’s Special Education Program and the Birth to Three Division of the Department of Health will also offer CHILD FIND, the annual screening focused on identifying children with developmental delays. Parents are welcome to find out about and sign up for the Women, Infants and Children program, the State Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Childcare and Head Start.

Free books and healthy snacks will be provided.

The health fairs have collectively served 122 children territory-wide since its inauguration in 2011. Of the services provided, many children were recommended for additional developmental screenings or health followup.

“The health fair achieved our objective of providing free health and developmental screening to young children who have limited access to these services in an effort to catch children with potential problems as early as possible,” said Maureen Moorehead, district coordinator of special education and one of the event organizers.

Volunteers are needed to escort children and parents through the maze of services and are invited to attend training from 1 to 3 p.m. Thursday at the V.I. Cardiac Center on St. Croix and Nov. 15 at the Head Start center in Sugar Estate.

Participating agencies include the departments of Human Services, Health and Education, Frederiksted Health Care, Inc., The Family Connection of the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands, Lutheran Social Services of the Virgin Islands, and Virgin Islands Partners for Healthy Community.

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