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Seeking to add to its leadership reputation in health care reform and cost control, Safeway will once again offer seasonal flu vaccines in its U.S. stores at a substantial savings vs. doctor-administered vaccines. Now through March 2010, or while supplies last, Safeway stores will provide seasonal flu vaccines on a “walk-in” basis at most stores, and through scheduled flu vaccine clinics at others. Safeway is also providing an off-site flu clinic service in most states for businesses, senior centers and nursing homes that choose to provide their employees or residents with the convenience of receiving a flu vaccine where they work or live.
“We estimate nearly $100 million in savings to the health care system through our program alone,” said David Fong, Safeway’s SVP of pharmacy. “We have made the process of getting a flu vaccine affordable and convenient. Individuals have no reason to go unprotected this flu season, nor should businesses risk lost productivity due to a sick workforce.”
Amid an economic cycle that has forced many people to cut costs at the expense of their health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention predicts an unusually severe flu season, elevating the urgency for certain groups and demographics to receive the vaccine.
In addition to providing seasonal flu vaccines, Safeway is working with state, local and federal health authorities to obtain a supply of the vaccine to combat against the H1N1 Swine Flu virus, the vaccine for which is expected to be available in the United States in late October. The Pleasanton, Calif.-based chain also offers full-service adult and adolescent immunization services for the prevention of shingles, tetanus, hepatitis, pneumococcal disease, meningococcal disease and other conditions.
Safeway owns and ooperates 1,739 stores in the United States and western Canada under the Safeway, Vons, Dominick’s, Genuardi’s, Carrs, Randalls, Tom Thumb, Pak ‘n Save and Pavilions banners.