CVS, MinuteClinic Ready for Upcoming Flu Season

CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic today launched an informational campaign in its retail stores and clinics, as well as online, to start educating consumers about what they need to know to protect themselves and their families during this upcoming flu season.

CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic today launched an informational campaign in its retail stores and clinics, as well as online, to start educating consumers about what they need to know to protect themselves and their families during this upcoming flu season.

"Every CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic location across the country will be able to administer flu vaccinations this season," said Troyen A. Brennan, MD, chief medical officer for CVS Caremark. "By combining unparalleled access with a comprehensive awareness campaign, we are working hard to do our part to ensure that all Americans are vaccinated this flu season."

This year, only one vaccine will be required for protection against both seasonal and H1N1 influenza, making flu prevention much easier. In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is recommending for the first time that anyone ages 6 months or older get a flu shot, an expansion from its previous recommendations that certain risk groups be vaccinated.

Beginning today, signs at all CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic locations will remind consumers that an "all-in-one" flu shot will be available to protect them against the flu this year. CVS/pharmacy has more than 7,000 stores across the country and there are approximately 500 MinuteClinic locations inside select CVS/pharmacy stores.

In addition, the websites www.cvs.com/flu and www.minuteclinic.com/flu have been updated with information about this year's "all-in-one" flu shot to protect against both seasonal and H1N1 influenza, details on the CDC's universal vaccination recommendation, tips for staying healthy during flu season and other educational/informational content.

In a consumer survey* conducted by CVS/pharmacy this spring, more than half (59 percent) of respondents said they are likely to get a flu shot in 2010, and more than one-third (37 percent) of those who did not get a flu shot in 2009 said they are more likely to get one this year.

While demand for flu shots is expected to be high in the coming season, not all consumers are getting the flu shot message. While nearly two-thirds of survey respondents are aware of the CDC's recommendation for a "universal" flu vaccination for anyone 6 months or older, only half of them said they are more likely to get a flu shot based on that recommendation.

"Our survey results demonstrate that while there is a high public awareness about flu, more work needs to be done to educate consumers on the importance of getting a flu shot every year," Brennan added.

CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic will announce the complete details of its 2010 flu vaccination campaign within the next few weeks.

*CVS/pharmacy completed 3,113 interviews from April 1st to 5th, 2010.

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