Lifestyle

Bartell Drugs launches 'seasonal flu' vaccination program

Bartell Drugs is launching an extensive "seasonal flu" vaccination program, with a full schedule of in-store vaccinations in all 56 stores and an employer program targeting area businesses.

Bartell's has scheduled more than 100 in-store seasonal flu vaccination clinics at their stores in King, Snohomish and Pierce counties. Auburn's Bartell's is located at 3902 A St. SE.

In addition to clinics, many stores are offering shots by appointment or on a walk-in basis.

Bartell's pharmacists are reminding customers that vaccinations for seasonal flu viruses remain an important preventative measure, particularly for "at risk" groups.

"While there has been a great deal of attention focused on the H1N1 'swine flu' virus, seasonal flu viruses remain a major cause of hospitalization and death each year," said Wade Schutze, pharmacy district manager of the 56-store chain. "Because of the dangers and complications it can have in the elderly, children and people with health problems, the perception of seasonal flu severity is changing."

Bartell Drugs will support state, local and federal health programs in the administration of the vaccine to combat against the H1N1 Swine Flu virus when it is available. The vaccine reportedly will be available in October.

Between 30,000 and 40,000 U.S. residents die each year from seasonal influenza and its complications, and another estimated 150,000 people are hospitalized.

Cost for the shot is $28 and Medicare Part B is accepted. Vaccinations are available for children ages 14-17 when accompanied by a parent or legal guardian. For more information on vaccination schedules and locations see www.bartelldrugs.com or visit a Bartell's location.

Bartell's also also launching it flu vaccination program for area businesses, offering "turn-key," on-site flu shot clinics for businesses where Bartell's trained pharmacists come to the workplace. Discounts are available depending on the number of employees.

"This is a way for businesses, large and small, to decrease sick time and lost productivity," said Rachel Nowak, who is coordinating the business flu clinic program. "Getting vaccinated against influenza also helps protect those around you who may be at higher risk from complications."

For more information on Bartell's business flu vaccination program, call 206-768-7700 or e-mail clinicalservices@bartelldrugs.com.

Seattle-based Bartell Drugs owns and operates 56 stores in King, Snohomish and Pierce counties. Family owned for 119 years, it is the nation's oldest drugstore chain. For more information on Bartell Drugs visit www.bartelldrugs.com.

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