“COVID-19 has had a disproportionate and tragic impact on residents and staff in these facilities and Walgreens pharmacy teams have stepped up to support this significant undertaking and protect those who greatly need the vaccine,” said John Standley, president, Walgreens. “We have rapidly accelerated vaccine administration in long-term care facilities over the last month, and will continue to expand access to vaccines in our pharmacies as supply becomes available.”
Partnering with Federal and Local Governments to Expand Vaccine Access
In addition to supporting long-term care facilities, Walgreens began in-store vaccinations in 17 states and jurisdictions as part of the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program on Feb. 12. The company administered nearly all 180,000 doses of the first weekly vaccine allotment within three days.
Beginning Feb. 25, Walgreens will receive a weekly allocation of more than 480,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses and support administration in the following states and jurisdictions, including: Arizona, Alaska,* California,* Chicago, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia,* Illinois, Kentucky, Maine,* Maryland, Nevada,* New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, New York City, North Carolina, Ohio,* Oregon,* Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Utah,* Vermont, Virginia,* West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming.*
Walgreens also continues to assist several states and jurisdictions with the administration of their COVID-19 vaccine allocations through in-store vaccinations or off-site clinics. While supply remains limited, individuals eligible to receive the vaccine under the federal and state programs can schedule appointments by visiting Walgreens.com/ScheduleVaccine or through their state department of health website.
Committing to Equitable Access to Vaccines in Underserved Communities
As part of Walgreens commitment to drive health equity, the company is launching the Vaccine Equity Initiative to increase access to vaccinations, provide education to address vaccine hesitancy and create partnerships that best meet the needs of each community. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) points to many interrelated factors that hinder vaccine access for communities of color, including vaccine hesitancy and lack of access to transportation.[i]
“Walgreens understands more needs to be done to reduce health disparities and ensure equitable access to COVID vaccines,” said Carlos Cubia, senior vice president and chief global diversity officer, Walgreens Boots Alliance. “Our pharmacy team members reflect the communities we serve and have a deep understanding of the barriers to care among those most impacted by the pandemic. This initiative, combined with our community presence, allows us to create tailored solutions that can help to improve the health of communities.”
Walgreens COVID-19 vaccine equity efforts include:
- Hosting off-site COVID-19 vaccination clinics in more than 100 underserved communities across the nation;
- Working collaboratively with civic leaders, advocacy groups, and faith-based organizations to offer educational programs that build trust in COVID vaccine safety and efficacy and host vaccination events;
- Advancing Walgreens and Uber’s efforts in collaboration with the Chicago Urban League and other partners, starting with educational outreach to grow confidence in COVID-19 vaccines as a precursor to providing free rides in socially vulnerable communities where transportation may be a barrier to getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Community partners will distribute vouchers for free or discounted rides, and pilots will start in Chicago, Atlanta, El Paso and Houston and scale nationally as vaccine inventories expand;
- Distributing nearly half of the vaccine allocation as part of the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program to Walgreens stores located in Medical Underserved Areas (MUAs) and areas with a high social vulnerability index score;
- Expanding access to COVID testing at more than 5,000 Walgreens pharmacy locations by April 1, with more than half of sites located in socially vulnerable areas.
More information on Walgreens efforts to support communities during the COVID-19 pandemic is available here. Additional imagery, b-roll and multimedia assets are available on the Walgreens newsroom.
*Walgreens added as a new pharmacy provider as part of the Federal Retail Pharmacy Program beginning the week of Feb. 25.
Walgreens (www.walgreens.com) is included in the Retail Pharmacy USA Division of Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (Nasdaq: WBA), a global leader in retail and wholesale pharmacy. As America’s most loved pharmacy, health and beauty company, Walgreens purpose is to champion the health and well-being of every community in America. Operating more than 9,000 retail locations across America, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, Walgreens is proud to be a neighborhood health destination serving approximately 8 million customers each day. Walgreens pharmacists play a critical role in the U.S. healthcare system by providing a wide range of pharmacy and healthcare services. To best meet the needs of customers and patients, Walgreens offers a true omnichannel experience, with platforms bringing together physical and digital, supported by the latest technology to deliver high-quality products and services in local communities nationwide.