CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic Prepared to Help Customers Fight the Flu This Season


Nearly 1 in 5 adults chose to receive a flu shot in a retail setting last year
Flu shots anytime, direct medical billing and 7,800 CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic locations will make getting a flu shot easier than ever before

WOONSOCKET, R.I., July 29, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --

CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic announced today that they are prepared to help customers fight the flu this season with the most convenient access to receiving a flu shot once influenza vaccine becomes available in August.

All CVS/pharmacy locations and all MinuteClinic sites, which are located inside select CVS/pharmacy stores, will provide flu shots every day with no appointment necessary, including evenings and weekends. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that everyone ages 6 months and older get a flu shot as soon as vaccine is available, including those who were vaccinated last season.

"By providing 7,800 retail locations across the United States that can offer vaccinations with no appointment necessary, CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic will make getting a flu shot easier than ever this season," said Papatya Tankut, RPh, Vice President of Pharmacy Professional Services at CVS/pharmacy. "While the composition of this year's vaccine has not changed from the previous season, immunity from influenza declines over time. Receiving an annual flu shot provides you with the best protection against catching the flu."

CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic will also make flu shots more accessible this year by providing direct medical billing to many national and regional health plans that will cover all or part of the cost of a flu shot.

In addition to the seasonal flu vaccine, CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic will offer Fluzone® High-Dose this season, which will be available for people ages 65 and older. This higher dose vaccine is designed to provide stronger protection from influenza to this age group, which has a greater risk of developing a severe illness from influenza. Most Medicare beneficiaries, including those covered by Medicare Part B, can get either version of the flu vaccine for no out of pocket cost.

According to the CDC, retail pharmacies such as CVS/pharmacy are an increasingly popular destination for a flu shot, accounting for more than 18% of adults who were vaccinated last season.*

CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic will announce the complete details of its 2011 flu vaccination program within the next few weeks.

About CVS/pharmacy

CVS/pharmacy, the retail division of CVS Caremark Corporation (NYSE: CVS), is America's leading retail pharmacy with more than 7,200 CVS/pharmacy and Longs Drug stores. CVS/pharmacy is committed to improving the lives of those we serve by making innovative and high-quality health and pharmacy services safe, affordable and easy to access, both in its stores and online at CVS.com. General information about CVS/pharmacy and CVS Caremark is available at http://info.cvscaremark.com/.

About MinuteClinic

MinuteClinic is a division of CVS Caremark Corporation (NYSE: CVS), the largest pharmacy health care provider in the United States. MinuteClinic is the largest provider of retail-based medical centers in the United States with approximately 500 locations in 26 states and the District of Columbia. By creating a health care delivery model that responds to consumer demand, MinuteClinic makes access to high-quality medical treatment easier for more Americans. Nationally, the company has generated more than nine million patient visits, with a 95% customer satisfaction rating. MinuteClinic consistently brings innovation to the marketplace and sets new standards for clinical quality that exceed national guidelines. MinuteClinic is the first retail health care provider to receive accreditation (2006) and reaccreditation (2009) from The Joint Commission, the national evaluation and certifying agency for nearly 15,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. For more information, visit http://www.minuteclinic.com/.

* CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report: Place of Influenza Vaccination Among Adults -- United States, 2010 -- 11 Influenza Season, June 17, 2011 / 60(23); 781-785

MEDIA CONTACTS:

Mike DeAngelis
CVS/pharmacy
401.770.2645
[email protected]

Brent Burkhardt
TBC (for MinuteClinic)
410.986.1303
[email protected]

SOURCE CVS/pharmacy