WOONSOCKET, R.I., Nov. 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- CVS/pharmacy and Direct Relief USA teamed up to provide free flu vaccinations at a flu shot clinic held today in Dallas, Texas. During the free flu shot clinic, CVS pharmacists vaccinated uninsured patients at Healing Hands Ministries Medical & Dental Clinic.
Today's free flu shot clinic in Dallas resulted from the partnership between CVS Caremark and Direct Relief USA that is offering up to $6 million this year in free flu shots to community clinic and health center patients who lack health insurance. Through this program, more than 480 participating clinics and health centers across the country, including Healing Hands Ministries Medical & Dental Clinic, are identifying uninsured individuals from their existing patient populations and providing them with a free flu shot voucher, which is redeemable at any CVS/pharmacy or MinuteClinic location.
"I applaud the efforts of CVS/pharmacy, Direct Relief USA and Healing Hands Ministries for the good work they are doing in the city of Dallas and throughout the United States in their efforts to provide the gift of good health," said Texas State Senator John J. Carona.
"We are committed to giving back to the communities where we do business. That is why we've partnered with Direct Relief USA to help ensure that cost is not a barrier to patients receiving the important preventive health care provided by a flu vaccination," said Laura Underwood, Area Vice President of CVS/pharmacy in Texas. "As we enter the peak of flu season, we are pleased to extend our free flu shot program through the clinic held today at Healing Hands Ministries in Dallas."
"Direct Relief is extremely grateful for the partnership with CVS/pharmacy and to be able to provide $6 million in free flu shots to uninsured people across the United States," said Damon Taugher, Director, Direct Relief USA. "This year, through the CVS/pharmacy free flu shot program, Direct Relief USA was able to send vouchers to 483 clinics -- 100 more clinics than last year. Flu shots are an important measure in preventative health care and Direct Relief USA is thankful to be able to provide these vaccines to patients for whom cost may have otherwise been a barrier."
"The collaboration between Healing Hands Ministries, CVS/pharmacy and Direct Relief USA demonstrates the commitment of business and charity to assure those in need have access to preventative measures to positively impact the health of the communities we all serve," said Janna Gardner, RN, COHN-S, Executive Director of Healing Hands Ministries. "Healing Hands Ministries is grateful to have the opportunity to provide this resource to our patients as a result of the generosity of CVS/pharmacy and Direct Relief USA."
Flu vaccinations are available at all CVS/pharmacy and MinuteClinic locations nationwide every day, including evenings and weekends, with no appointment necessary. CVS/pharmacy has more than 7,200 locations and MinuteClinic has nearly 600 locations inside select CVS/pharmacy stores.
A list of locations at which the CVS Caremark-Direct Relief free flu shot vouchers are available for current uninsured patients of participating clinics and health centers may be found at www.cvs.com/flu.
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 Direct Relief
Founded in 1948, Direct Relief is a Santa Barbara, California-based nonprofit organization focused on improving quality of life by bringing critically needed medicines and supplies to local healthcare providers worldwide. Direct Relief has provided more than $1 billion in privately funded humanitarian aid since 2000, including more than $200 million in assistance in the United States. It has earned a fundraising efficiency score of 99 percent or better from Forbes for the past eight years, and is ranked by the Chronicle of Philanthropy as California's largest international nonprofit organization based on private support. For more information, please visit http://www.directrelief.org/.
About Healing Hands Ministries
Founded in 2007, Healing Hands Ministries is a charity clinic that serves the northeast Dallas community providing quality medical and dental care to 3000 uninsured patients for near 10,000 visits in 2011. Healing Hands is the safety net for those patients that make too much to be eligible for government programs, but not enough to afford health insurance. The patients of Healing Hands Ministries are treated with dignity and respect with staff being sensitive to cultural barriers and health literacy issues.