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Pharmacies Eye an Expanded Role in Vaccination By

  in | Published 2014-06-14 06:22:56 | 377 Reads | Unrated

Summary

Immunization is one of the pivotal aspects of health within any community, and policymakers around the U.S. are increasingly looking to pharmacies to help boost vaccine coverage.

Full Content

Immunization is one of the pivotal aspects of health within any community, and policymakers around the U.S. are increasingly looking to pharmacies to help boost vaccine coverage. Pharmacies often act as the primary point of contact for health care consumers, thus making them a natural place for people to turn to when they need vaccine services. There are several reasons why pharmacies are the ideal venue for immunization. Their hours of operation are convenient for consumers, pharmacists can use medication records to identify at-risk patients who need to be inoculated the most and customers
often feel at ease turning to providers with whom they are familiar. In the U.S., 45 states and territories allow pharmacies to administer any vaccine that is approved by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Additionally, all regions allow pharmacists to distribute flu shots. As of 2012, pharmacies accounted for 20 percent of adult immunization consultations. This makes them the leading venue for these services, second only to doctors' offices, which made up 35 percent. In 2012, pharmacies were responsible for: ● 38 percent of adults' flu shots (up from 5 percent in 2008) ● 35 percent of adults' HPV shots (up from 14 percent in 2010) ● 20 percent of shingles shots (up from 6 percent in 2010) ● 57 percent of children's flu shots (up from 26 percent in 2008) Overall, the proportion of adults vaccinated in pharmacies tripled since 2005, indicating that businesses across the country are interested in providing these services as a way to diversify their revenue streams while improving the health of their communities. This is important, considering that the flu is still responsible for 225,000 hospitalizations and 50,000 deaths in the U.S. every year. Pharmacists are essential players in community health, providing customers with both medications and vaccines. TransactRx's claim submission and reimbursement solutions can work with your current pharmacy software systems to determine coverage as well as ensure that you are fully reimbursed for your valuable immunization services.

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