Sensory Friendly Vaccine Clinics
At the Autism Society of Greater Wisconsin, we are committed to creating connections to empower everyone in the Autism community with the resources need to live fully. Because people with Autism and other developmental disabilities and their families have been disproportionately impacted by the ongoing public health and economic emergency caused by COVID-19, the Autism Society of Greater Wisconsin is working to create community connections to increase access to a calm, supportive, and inclusive vaccine experience.
The Autism Society of Greater Wisconsin is partnering with health agencies and other community partners to co-host Sensory Friendly Vaccine clinics. The clinics are open to Autistic children & adults, their family members, and anyone else who would benefit from a modified vaccination process.
What makes a clinic Sensory Friendly?
Sensory Friendly Vaccine Clinics are designed to provide a flexible, supportive, and calm environment during the vaccination process. While each clinic will look different, generally participants will have access to the following accommodations/tools:
- Social narrative to prepare for the visit
- One-on-one trained support staff
- Visual schedule
- Sensory fidgets
- Shotblocker to help with injection pain
- Buzzy Bee to help with injection pain
- Sensory tools like weighted blankets, calming sensory water toys, noise canceling headphones, etc.
- Other individualized accommodations can be arranged – please just ask!
Feedback from Participating Families
- Getting this done in a low stress, guilt free environment! It alleviated my own stress as a parent too, about being judged for my child’s behavior. I appreciate the patience my children were shown, and getting to play afterwards helped create a more positive memory of the event, which will hopefully help the next time a vaccine is needed. This clinic was a game changer for my family. Thank you so much for putting it together!
- Helping my daughter have a positive vaccination experience to help her move past her fears, and seeing her be so well respected by the staff/volunteers
- The staff was wonderful, and our boys were completely comfortable and calm through what is typically a stressful situation.
- This was as best of an experience my child could get for getting a shot- thank you for doing this for our children
- This was such a wonderful event for kiddos. We loved that our boys were able to have a positive experience to associate with their vaccination. No tears were shed!!
- This was a great experience! We would love to see this expand to include more vaccinations like the flu shot each year.
- When we first checked in, the ladies downstairs were aware of my daughter’s anxiety and made sure she was brought straight in without having to wait. It was a relief that people expected her and were prepared with extra patience and ready to make the experience as quick as possible.
Sensory Friendly Routine Vaccine Clinics
March 20th - Schedule Your Appointment by March 6th
May 15, 2023 - Schedule Your Appointment by May 1st
Time: 3:30 - 6:30 pm
Location: Building for Kids Children's Museum, 100 W College Ave, Appleton
These clinics are designed for children with Autism, ADHD, other developmental disabilities, or anyone else who would benefit from a modified vaccination experience. Routine vaccinations will be offered, in addition to flu and COVID-19 vaccines and boosters. Examples of routine vaccinations include but are not limited to those for Chickenpox, Hepatitis A, Hepatitis B, Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Polio, etc. The Appleton Health Department can help you identify what vaccines are recommended for you or your child prior to your appointment.
After appointments, participants can play in the museum until it closes at 7:00 pm. The Building for Kids will also provide a pizza dinner.
Schedule an Appointment
To make an appointment for the Sensory Friendly Routine Vaccine Clinic, call Mosaic Family Health at (920) 832-2783 and request to schedule an appointment at the “Sensory Friendly Vaccine Clinic at the Building for Kids”. Be prepared to provide basic information about you and your child and have your insurance card ready, if you have insurance. Insurance is not required to make an appointment.
After scheduling is complete, the Appleton Health Department will contact each family to review vaccines options and develop an individualized vaccine plan. Appointment reminders and resources for appointment preparation will be provided by the Autism Society of Greater Wisconsin.
To inquire about the Sensory Friendly Vaccine Clinic model or to explore a local partnership, please contact Kirsten Cooper at (920) 215-3303 or firstname.lastname@example.org.