Flu season is coming, and pharmacy chains start to get ready for it. On August 21 HHS (Health and Human Services) allowed pharmacists in all 50 states to give childhood vaccination services, including flu shots.
“You’ve got this perfect storm in autumn. Everyone is back from vacation. Some are going back to work. In some parts of the country, schools are starting,” said Lawrence Gostin, a global health professor at Georgetown University. “You have a mass migration, and with it people are going to be bringing both influenza and COVID-19. … To me, there is no plausible reason why we wouldn’t have both.”
Taking into account that fact, that most of the people afraid of flu vaccination because coronavirus infection, that still going, the US government insisted on a decision about vaccination at pharmacy.
“These gaps in vaccination services coverage are particularly concerning this season as COVID-19 reveals another facet of health inequity in the US” according to CDC Director Robert R. Redfield.
75% More Flu Shots This Year
On September 23 Meijer shared their plans on this vaccination season with media. This year they plan to administer 75 % more flu shots, thanks to COVID-19 pandemic, and risks that the collision of these infections brings.
“When it comes to getting your flu shot, the earlier in the season, the better,” Meijer Vice President of Pharmacy Jason Beauch said. “While the flu shot will not protect against the coronavirus, getting it as soon as you can helps protect you and your family from unwanted illness and can help reduce the potential for symptoms that could be confused with COVID-19.”
Jason Beauch connects those increase with higher awareness of the need to be protected as well as a shift toward patients looking for more convenient options and flexibility. ” In fact, one third of flu shots provided so far this year have taken place on weekends or before/after traditional business hours. Additionally, senior citizens and customers with chronic health conditions can take advantage of dedicated pharmacy hours from 7-8 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays,” – said Beauch.
Meijer states, that all their pharmacists adhere to rules of safety, wear masks and follow specific protocols to disinfect all surfaces and areas where shots are administered between each patient, according to the retailer’s specific COVID-19 protocol. Customers can plan their visit online, or just get a flu shot during pharmacy hours. Depending on age, health status and state regulations, Meijer offers a variety of vaccine options, including quadrivalent and doses for seniors.
2,200 Pharmacies Participating
2,200 pharmacies and 223 clinics (called The Little Clinic) across 35 states will be administered flu shots, announced Kroger Health.
“To receive a flu shot, customers and associates can make an appointment online at. They can also complete their pre-visit paperwork online to reduce contact and promote physical distancing, and many insurance companies cover the flu shot with no co-pay,” – Kroger Health published.
“It will be very difficult for people to determine the difference between flu symptoms and COVID-19,” said Doug Cornelius, health and wellness director for Kroger Health. “That’s why it’s so important for Americans to get a flu shot this year. It not only has been proven to help protect against the flu, but may also help reduce misidentification as COVID-19.”