DEERFIELD, Ill., February 05, 2020 - Today, data from the Walgreens Flu Index® showing medium to high flu activity across the country, is reinforcing the importance of protecting yourself and others against influenza through a flu vaccine if you haven’t already. A recap of Walgreens Flu Index data for the month of January shows an increase in flu activity compared to the same timeframe last season. While flu activity tapered off in the first couple weeks of 2020, it has shown continued increase for the final weeks of January. Eight of the top 10 DMAs experiencing the most activity fall within the South, and seven of those in Texas. Meanwhile, for the first time this season, New Mexico tops the state list with Oklahoma and Texas following. Even if you don’t live in one of the top markets or states, if you or your loved ones haven’t gotten the annual flu vaccine it’s not too late. You can find the Walgreens pharmacy closest to you and get your flu shot by using the store locator on Walgreens.com or in the Walgreens mobile app.
Check out a recap of the top 10 markets and states for the month of January below:
Top 10 DMAs with Flu Activity
For month of January
- El Paso, Texas (Las Cruces, N.M.)
- Odessa-Midland, Texas
- Casper-Riverton, Wyo.
- Binghamton, N.Y.
- San Angelo, Texas
- Abilene-Sweetwater, Texas
- Bowling Green, Ky.
- Wichita Falls, Texas and Lawton, Okla.
- Laredo, Texas
- Harlingen-Weslaco-Brownsville-McAllen, Texas
Top 10 States with Flu Activity
For month of January
- New Mexico
- West Virginia
Launched six flu seasons ago, the Walgreens Flu Index is an online, interactive tool to view flu activity across markets and states in the U.S., including Puerto Rico. Each week, we analyze prescription data for antiviral medications used to treat influenza across thousands of Walgreens and Duane Reade locations nationwide. In addition to the top markets and states, the Flu Index also ranks the markets and states experiencing the greatest gains in activity on a week-over-week basis.
A new feature of the Walgreens Flu Index for the 2019-2020 season allows you to see how current flu activity compares to last season. January data continues to show that southern states are seeing the highest incidences of flu activity this season. Four Texas markets that were in the January top 10 DMAs last season have once again found themselves topping the flu activity charts this season: El Paso, Texas (Las Cruces, N.M.), Odessa-Midland, Texas, San Angelo, Texas, and Laredo, Texas. Outside of Texas, for the first time this season, markets in Wyoming, (Casper-Riverton), and New York, (Binghamton), are in our monthly report of the top 10 DMAs.
The only thing predictable about the flu is that it’s unpredictable. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the best way to protect yourself and loved ones is by getting a flu shot every season, ideally before the flu starts to spread in your community. But now is as good a time as any-flu season can extend into the spring season.
Where to Find the Walgreens Flu Index
Weekly reports of the Walgreens Flu Index are available through an online, interactive map, which allows anyone to search and find information regarding the most current state of influenza in their community –to view the latest report, click here. In addition, monthly updates will be published to the Walgreens Newsroom.
What’s Our Methodology?
The Index is not intended to illustrate levels or severity of flu activity, but rather, based on this methodology, to show which populations are experiencing the highest incidence of influenza within the U.S. and Puerto Rico each week.
Data for the Walgreens Flu Index is analyzed at state and geographic market levels to measure absolute impact and incremental change of antiviral medications on a per store average basis, and does not include markets in which Walgreens has fewer than 10 retail locations.
To learn more about the flu vaccine, visit Walgreens.com/flu or talk to your local Walgreens pharmacist. Patients can also contact pharmacy professionals 24/7 through Pharmacy Chat available on Walgreens.com and the mobile app.
Walgreens (walgreens.com), one of the nation's largest drugstore chains, is included in the Retail Pharmacy USA Division of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (Nasdaq: WBA), a global leader in retail and wholesale pharmacy. Walgreens is proud to be a neighborhood health, beauty and retail destination supporting communities across the country, and was named to FORTUNE* magazine’s 2019 Companies that Change the World list. Approximately 8 million customers interact with Walgreens in stores and online each day. As of August 31, 2019, Walgreens operates 9,277 drugstores with a presence in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, along with its omnichannel business, Walgreens.com. Walgreens also provides specialty pharmacy and mail services and offers in-store clinics and other health care services throughout the United States, most of which are operated by our health care strategic partners.
*© 2019, Fortune Media IP Limited. Used under license.
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Megan Boyd, Walgreens