Rite Aid commences flu vaccination drive

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Foundation donates $50,000 for Baton Rouge flood relief

Rite Aid flu shot sign_interior

CAMP HILL, Pa. — With the start of flu season just around the corner in the fall, Rite Aid Corp. has begun its annual immunization push by offering walk-in flu shots daily.

The drug chain said Tuesday that customers can visit any of its nearly 4,600 stores to get a seasonal flu shot from a certified immunizing Rite Aid pharmacist. Flu shots are available during pharmacy hours and are covered by most insurance plans, including Medicare Part B.

Depending on state regulations, vaccination options at Rite Aid include the trivalent flu vaccine (protection against the the influenza A H3N2, influenza B and influenza A H1N1 viruses), a high-dose flu vaccine for seniors and a quadrivalent vaccine (adds protection against an additional influenza B virus). Also available by request for adults ages 18 to 64 is an intradermal flu shot with a smaller needle that’s injected into the skin instead of the muscle.

“Immunizations play a key role in a person’s overall health and wellness year-round, but this is especially true when it comes to protecting oneself from the flu,” Rite Aid executive vice president of pharmacy Jocelyn Konrad said in a statement. “With more than 11,000 immunizing pharmacists and thousands of locations across the country, getting a flu shot at Rite Aid is a convenient and easy way for people to make sure that they are protected.”

Again for this flu season, a Rite Aid team will arrange and hold workplace flu clinics staffed by certified immunizing Rite Aid pharmacists. The drug chain also offers employers a voucher program, in which employees get a flu shot voucher that can be used at any Rite Aid pharmacy. Employers can sign up for a Rite Aid work-site vaccination program online at ShieldMyWorkforce.com.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), it takes up to 14 days to build up full protection against the flu, so everyone ages six months and older should get a flu vaccination as soon as it’s available. Protection from flu is more important for groups of people at greater risk for influenza complications, including people with diabetes; pregnant women; seniors; children younger than 5; and people with asthma and other chronic lung diseases, kidney and liver disorders, heart disease and compromised immune systems.

“We also encourage people to use flu season as an opportunity to review their immunization history and need for other vaccinations,” Konrad added. “Rite Aid pharmacists can review a person’s immunization history and make recommendations for additional vaccinations based on the individual’s unique needs.”

Rite Aid pharmacists, subject to state regulations, can administer vaccines that protect against tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis (Tdap), pneumonia and shingles at the same time as the seasonal flu shot. Customers can visit Rite Aid’s Vaccine Central website to complete an immunization evaluation, track their personal vaccination history, and access other educational resources. Immunizations against other vaccine-preventable diseases are also available for employees through Rite Aid’s Shield My Workforce program.

In other news, The Rite Aid Foundation late Monday announced a $50,000 donation to the American Red Cross Louisiana Capital Area to help families and communities impacted by the historic rainfall and flooding across the greater Baton Rouge, La., area over the weekend.

“One hearts and prayers go out to everyone affected by this weekend’s devastating rainfall and the flooding that followed,” Ken Martindale, CEO of stores and president at Rite Aid and president of The Rite Aid Foundation. “As cleanup begins and rebuilding gets under way, we hope that our donation to the American Red Cross helps make it just a little easier for those who have been impacted the most.”

Rite Aid operates 11 stores in the greater Baton Rouge area and 61 stores in Louisiana overall. The company employs about 1,000 associates in the state.

The deluge began heading into this past weekend, as a slow-moving, low-pressure storm system dumped torrential and prolonged rainfall across southern Louisiana. Accumulations surged over 20 inches in some areas and raised several rivers to record flood levels. Published reports said that more than 20,000 people had to be rescued as thousands of buildings and cars flooded, leaving many homeless and driving many people to shelters. At least seven people were killed in storm-related incidents, according to reports.


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