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VA Retail Immunization Care Coordination Program

No-cost flu shots at Walgreens for VA patients.During flu season, protecting your health with a flu shot is easier than ever — and as close as your local VA or neighborhood Walgreens! VA and Walgreens care about your health and are partnering to offer enrolled Veteran patients easy access to flu shots.

VA and Walgreens are national partners, providing no-cost flu shots to enrolled Veterans of the VA health care system. During the program, which runs from August 15, 2017 through March 31, 2018, enrolled Veteran patients nationwide have the option of getting their flu shot at any of Walgreens’ 8,200 locations in addition to their local VA health care facilities. No appointment is required; simply go to any Walgreens, tell the pharmacist you receive care at a VA facility, and show your Veterans Identification Card and another form of photo ID.*

Your immunization record will be updated electronically in your local VA electronic health record. Walgreens has the capability to electronically send vaccination information to the VA electronic health record. The VA-Walgreens national partnership is part of VA’s eHealth Exchange project. This national program ensured that many Veterans got their no-cost flu shot at their local Walgreens, satisfying their wellness reminder because they either found it more convenient or did not have a scheduled appointment at a local VA health care facility.

Patients will also be asked to complete a vaccine consent form at time of service.

Other Options

VA now offers expanded access to preventive health care by giving more options for your annual flu shot. You choose! No-cost flu shots are available at your VA health care facility or neighborhood Walgreens! Your VA medical record will be updated either way.

VA Health Care Facilities

You may receive a no-cost flu shot during any scheduled VA appointment, if you are admitted to one of our VA health care facilities, or at one of the convenient walk-in flu stations. For more information on locations and hours contact your local VA health care facility.

Other Non-VA Providers and Pharmacies

Many local retail pharmacies offer flu shots that may be covered by private insurance or programs such as Medicare. There may be a charge for your flu shot at these locations. If you do not have insurance, there will usually be a charge.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of the VA Retail Immunization Care Coordination Program?

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is excited about how the convenience of immunizations from retail provider Walgreens, combined with integrated health records, can improve immunization rates and expand access for Veterans who are enrolled in the VA health care system. For patients, the option of receiving immunizations at retail providers offers more convenience and choice to get important vaccines.Vaccines are subject to availability. State, age, and health-related restrictions may apply.

Additionally, when a VA-enrolled patient receives a flu vaccine at a participating Walgreens provider, an immunization record is automatically transmitted to VA and becomes part of the patient’s VA health record without having to complete any VA forms. VA patients can view this information on their My HealtheVet Blue Button, a tool to make patient medical records easily available for patients to download and share with members of their health care team.

My HealtheVet Blue Button: http://www.va.gov/bluebutton/

Why would I get a flu shot at Walgreens when I could get it at my local VA?

VHA medical facilities offer free flu shots to Veterans enrolled in VA health care. You are encouraged to visit the nearest facility and receive a flu vaccine each flu season. If that distance is too great, you now have another option. VA has partnered with Walgreens to provide flu vaccine at no cost to Veterans enrolled in VA health care. This partnership increases access to flu vaccine and improves vaccination rates among enrolled Veterans.

Are the same flu shots available at Walgreens that I would receive at a VA?

Not all flu vaccines are made by the same company. The flu vaccines you receive at VA or Walgreens will help protect you from the flu this season. To learn more about vaccines, visit the VA Public Health website.

VA Public Health website: http://www.publichealth.va.gov/vaccines.asp

Will I need to pay or is there a charge for a flu shot at Walgreens?

There is no cost to Veterans enrolled in VA health care for quadrivalent vaccine at Walgreens. However, if you decide to get another vaccine or different type of flu vaccine, Walgreens may charge you, your private insurance, or Medicare.

These no-cost flu shots are available nationwide from August 15, 2017, through March 31, 2018. Vaccines are subject to availability and may be in limited supply after March 1, 2018. VA-enrolled patients simply need to notify a pharmacist at a participating Walgreens that they are an enrolled Veteran in the VA health care system, and show their VA ID card along with a federal or state photo ID.

After March 31, 2018, applicable charges to third party insurance may apply. Walgreens also accepts most insurance plans depending on eligibility. Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), health plans are required to provide flu shots without charging a deductible, copayment or coinsurance. All patients going to Walgreens will need to fill out a Vaccine Administration Record (VAR) to receive a vaccination.

Are all Walgreens stores participating?

All Walgreens locations in the continental United States, Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico will be participating.

Find your closest Walgreens location: http://www.walgreens.com/storelocator/find.jsp.

What does a Veteran need to do to use Walgreens for their flu shot?

Simply let the Walgreens pharmacist know that you are Veteran enrolled in the VA health care system and show the VA ID card and another state or federal photo ID. That’s it! The VA-enrolled patient will be asked to fill out a Vaccine Adminstration Record (VAR) as part of the process. The VA will automatically get information about the patient’s flu shot from Walgreens.

You can download and print the Flu Vaccination Form to make it easier to get a flu shot from your local Walgreens.

How long will it take for a Veteran’s flu shot information to become part of their health record?

Health records will be available to VA clinicians within 24 hours of a patient receiving a vaccination. Some delays may occur.

How long does the program run?

The no-cost flu shot program starts August 15, 2017 and runs through March 31, 2018.  Please note vaccine supply may be limited after March 1, 2018.

Are other retail pharmacies a part of this program?

At this time, Walgreens is the first partner of the VA Retail Immunization Care Coordination Program.

Disclaimer from Walgreens

This wellness benefit is only for Veterans enrolled in the VA health care system. Family members and TRICARE members are not eligible. Veterans enrolled in the VA health care system seeking a flu shot at Walgreens will be required to complete a Walgreens Vaccine Administration Record in order to receive the vaccination. The no-cost flu shot option is for quadrivalent vaccine only, available now through March 31, 2018. After March 31, 2018, applicable charges to third party insurance may apply. Walgreens accepts most insurance plans, including Medicare.

Vaccine is subject to availability and ;may be in limited supply after March 1, 2018. State, age, and health-related restrictions may apply. If your local pharmacy is not participating in the VA Retail Immunization Care Coordination Program, it may participate in the future as the program expands.

Disclaimer of Endorsement

Reference to Walgreens, other non-VA pharmacies, or to any specific commercial products, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer or otherwise, does not constitute or imply VA endorsement, recommendation, or favoring of these companies, their services, or products.