Meijer Pharmacies Prepare to Administer 40 Percent More Flu Shots this Season Retailer cites easy availability and increased demand for the vaccination

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Oct. 3, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Meijer pharmacists anticipate administering 40 percent more flu shots this season than last, saying that its walk-in services and new options for flu shots are making it easier – and more appealing – for families to get vaccinated.

"Meijer customers know that we're making it easy for them to take care of their families by offering walk-in services and a variety of immunization choices to better meet their needs," said Nat Love, vice president of Meijer Drug Store. "If one person in your family is sick, chances are the illness will circulate throughout your home. The flu vaccine really is your best defense for keeping your entire family healthy."

Seasonal influenza, also known as the flu, is a contagious respiratory disease that can cause mild to severe illness, and at times, lead to hospitalization or death. Every flu season is different, and influenza effects vary from person to person. The seasonal flu season can begin as early as October and last as late as May, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Health experts recommend everyone over the age of 6 months should get vaccinated as soon as it's available because it takes about 2 weeks for antibodies to develop in the body and provide protection against the influenza virus.

"The seasonal flu vaccine is the No. 1 way to reduce the risk of getting the flu and spreading it others," Love said.

The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer operates 203 pharmacies in its supercenters through the Midwest, all of which administer the vaccine without an appointment during pharmacy hours and accept most major insurance plans.

Depending on age, health status, and your state's regulations, Meijer pharmacies offer a variety of vaccine options that include:

  • Shots injected in the arm for $24.99
  • FluMist nasal spray by request for $29.99
  • Fluzone HD for patients 65 and older that is typically covered by Medicare Part B

Additionally, Meijer pharmacists will offer Quadrivalent, the new vaccine that covers the four major strains of influenza for ages 5-49, once supplies become available in mid-October, Love said.

Anyone who gets the flu vaccine will receive a Meijer Health and Wellness Planner, as well as additional discounts on cold and flu products through the retailer's mPerks digital coupon program.

The flu vaccine, as well as other immunizations offered at Meijer, could also count as a prescription toward credits in the new mPerks Pharmacy Rewards Program, which allows customers to earn savings on shopping and gas purchases. See program details for restrictions

To start earning rewards, customers just go to http://mperks.meijer.com and sign up in the "rewards" section. Once customers sign up, they can preview and select coupons for their favorite national or Meijer own brand products that are then stored in their personal mPerks account until redeemed or expired. The applicable coupons are then instantly redeemed when shoppers enter in their mobile phone number, which serves as the mPerks account number, at checkout.

About Meijer: Meijer is a Grand Rapids, Mich.-based retailer that operates 203 supercenters and grocery stores throughout Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky. As a pioneer of the "one-stop shopping" concept, Meijer stores have evolved through the years to include expanded fresh produce and meat departments, as well as pharmacies, comprehensive electronics departments, garden centers and apparel offerings. Additional information on Meijer and the ability to shop for more can be found at www.meijer.com. Follow Meijer on Twitter @twitter.com/Meijer and @twitter.com/MeijerPR or become a fan at www.facebook.com/meijer.

SOURCE Meijer Pharmacies



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