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RxAlly, Kerr Drug help boost pneumonia immunization
February 26th, 2013
LEESBURG, Va. – Pharmacy alliance RxAlly has partnered with Shenandoah University's Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy and Kerr Drug to help community pharmacists implement a pneumonia immunization program.
RxAlly said Tuesday that through a Pfizer-awarded grant to the university, the program aims to promote and increase pneumococcal vaccinations for adults over age 65 and for high-risk patients ages 2 to 64 with comorbid conditions.
North Carolina drug chain Kerr Drug, an RxAlly member, will participate in the initiative along with a team of pharmacy educators, American Pharmacists Association (APhA) immunization trainers, an accredited medical education company, and RealCME, an outcomes analytics company.
According to RxAlly, which has over 22,000 member pharmacies, the effort has four key objectives: raise pneumococcal immunization rates among high-risk populations; improve the ability of pharmacists and pharmacy staff to identify candidates for receiving the pneumococcal vaccine; assist pharmacists and Rx staff in boosting awareness of the importance of getting a pneumococcal vaccine; and work with pharmacists and pharmacy staff to increase opportunities to provide immunization-related clinical services.
"Studies show the proven value of pharmacists in increasing immunization rates, and this will continue to create awareness of how pharmacy can and does play a major role in improving health outcomes and reducing health care costs in our communities," RxAlly chief executive officer Bruce Roberts said in a statement.
According to the 2010 data from the National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), pneumococcal vaccination coverage for U.S. adults age 65 and older and for high-risk adults ages 19 to 64 was 59.7% and 18.5%, respectively. And in North Carolina, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System indicates that 30.2% of the more than 10,000 patients surveyed received the pneumonia vaccine.
"Working with RxAlly and the ability to leverage its reach into community pharmacy will be a tremendous advantage to our faculty in contributing to the overall increase in pharmacist-delivered pneumococcal immunization rates and the corresponding improvement in public health," stated Alan McKay, founding dean of Shenandoah University's Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy.
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