October 2, 2014, 10:19:00 AM
Pilot Immunization Program in Florida Expands Nationwide
WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a first-of-its-kind partnership, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) today announced that it will join forces with retailer Walgreens to provide greater access to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention-recommended vaccinations to Veterans across the country. This partnership grew out of a successful pilot program that began in Florida to provide flu vaccines to Veterans throughout the state. Based on those results, VA is expanding the pilot nationwide.
Through its nearly 8,200 locations nationwide, Walgreens will offer flu and other recommended vaccinations to Veterans. Pharmacists can administer vaccinations to Veterans and will leverage eHealth Exchange, through its Walgreens Cloud Electronic Health Records platform, to securely share immunization records with VA to help ensure complete patient medical records.
Vaccinations are available daily during all pharmacy hours with no appointment necessary and are subject to availability.
“VA is proud to partner with Walgreens to provide needed vaccines to our nation’s Veterans,” said VA Secretary Robert A. McDonald. “This partnership is a great example of how government and the private sector can work together to effectively and efficiently provide Veterans the care and benefits that they've earned.”
“Walgreens is committed to supporting our Veterans, and we are proud to work with the Department of Veterans Affairs to provide convenient access to vaccines,” said Walgreens President and Chief Executive Officer Greg Wasson. “This is an excellent opportunity for our pharmacists to help VA educate Veterans about the importance of vaccinations, to improve immunization rates through greater access and to contribute to helping veterans get, stay and live well.”
“The VA-Walgreens partnership gives Veterans greater choice in time and location for getting their flu shots without having to complete any other VA forms,” said Interim Under Secretary for Health, Dr. Carolyn Clancy. “With this program, the Veteran patient’s record is integrated, and VA maintains a complete immunization record that allows us to more effectively provide patient-centered care.”
Vaccines are subject to availability. Age, state and health related restrictions may apply. Many immunizations may be covered by commercial insurance plans, Medicare Part B or Medicare Part D. As part of this launch and under the agreement, VA funding can provide approximately 75,000 flu shots for enrolled veterans. Patients are encouraged to check with their health plan for specific coverage details. To find the nearest Walgreens, veterans can call 1-800-WALGREENS or visit www.walgreens.com. For more information about VA’s immunization program, visit http://www.ehealth.va.gov/Immunization.asp
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