WOONSOCKET, R.I., Dec. 8 Fulfilling a commitment to keepfamilies healthy and make it easier to get a flu shot, CVS/pharmacy, thenation's largest retail pharmacy, and MinuteClinic, the largest retail healthcare clinic in the U.S., announced that they have surpassed a goal ofdelivering one million fu vaccinations during this Fall's flu shot season.
The companies, both divisions of CVS Caremark Corp. (NYSE: CVS), launchedan integrated campaign on Oct. 1 which provided vaccinations to consumers at7,500 scheduled flu shot clinic events in select CVS/pharmacy stores as wellas flu shots on demand seven days a week at more than 550 MinuteClinic healthcare centers located in 27 states.
MinuteClinic will continue to provide flu shots to adults and childrenduring the CDC's National Influenza Vaccination Week (Dec. 8-14) and on adaily basis during the holidays and throughout the flu season which can run aslate as April. To find the nearest MinuteClinic, go to www.minuteclinic.com.
"We are delighted that through the combined efforts of CVS/pharmacy andMinuteClinic we have delivered more than one million vaccinations to childrenand adults, which is the best step to ensure protection against the flu," saidPapatya Tankut, R.Ph. Vice President of Pharmacy Professional Services atCVS/pharmacy.
However, a nationwide survey conducted by CVS in September found that onlyhalf of adults (50 percent) planned to get a flu shot this year. Among thosewho do regularly get a shot, 55 percent wait until a normally scheduled visitto their doctor or health care provider.*
"Right now, flu activity in most parts of the country is sporadicaccording to the CDC, so there is still time to obtain a flu shot," said DonnaHaugland, Chief Nursing Officer for MinuteClinic. "But those who wait toolong, or choose not to get vaccinated at all risk time away from work, schooland other activities and the possibility of hospitalization or an even moreserious outcome."
Those at highest risk for the flu include individuals with chronicdiseases such as diabetes, asthma and heart disease; women who are pregnant;health care workers and young children. MinuteClinic offers vaccinations tochildren over 18 months in most cases. Preservative-free children'svaccinations are available at most MinuteClinic locations while supplies last.
This year, the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices hasendorsed influenza vaccination for all children ages 6 months to 18 years andpublic health agencies have reinforced the importance of protecting childrenduring the flu season. In some cases, local departments of health are alsorecommending flu vaccine for certain populations. For example, in New Jersey,a new law requires children ages 6 to 59 months who are enrolled in a licensedchild-care center or pre-school facility to receive at least one dose ofinfluenza vaccine by December 31.
The CVS flu shot survey found that 53 percent of adults with childrenunder 18 in their household plan to get them a flu shot with the rateincreasing to 60 percent for those with children under 12.
Flu shots at MinuteClinic are $30 and may be covered in whole or in partby insurance. MinuteClinic health care centers are staffed by masters-prepared, board-certified nurse practitioners and physician assistants whospecialize in family health care.
About CVS Caremark
CVS Caremark is the largest provider of prescriptions in the nation. TheCompany fills or manages more than 1 billion prescriptions annually. Throughits unmatched breadth of service offerings, CVS Caremark is transforming thedelivery of health care services in the U.S. The Company is uniquelypositioned to effectively manage costs and improve health care outcomesthrough its more than 6,800 CVS/pharmacy and Longs Drugs stores; its CaremarkPharmacy Services division (pharmacy benefit management, mail order andspecialty pharmacy); its retail-based health clinic subsidiary, MinuteClinic;and its online pharmacy, CVS.com. General information about CVS Caremark isavailable through the Investor Relations section of the Company's Web site, athttp://cvscaremark.com/investors, as well as through the Newsroom section ofthe Company's Web site, at http://cvscaremark.com/newsroom.
* These findings are from a survey conducted on the telephone Sept. 4-7,2008 among a random national sample of 1,005 adults 18 years and older. Theresults have a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2% among the total sample.Opinion Research Corporation of Princeton, N.J. conducted the fieldwork.Contacts: Carolyn Castel Kelly Kass Brent Burkhardt CVS Caremark Weber Shandwick TBC (401) 770-5717 (617) 520-7274 (410) 986-1303 for CVS/pharmacy for MinuteClinic
SOURCE CVS Caremark