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Albertsons invests in pharmacy to support comprehensive immunization access

Improvements to scheduling and pharmacy care will support co-administration of flu vaccine and new reformulated COVID-19 boosters at more than 1,700 pharmacy locations.

Albertsons is making investments in technology, vaccine inventory and patient services to increase immunization access and personalized care at more than 1,700 pharmacy locations.

Pharmacy teams across Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Shaws, Acme, Tom Thumb, Randalls, United Supermarkets, Pavilions, Star Market, Haggen, Carrs and more are now administering flu vaccines, as well as the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna bivalent COVID-19 boosters.

“Our pharmacy teams are partners in community health, and preparations for this year’s cold and flu season underscore an unwavering commitment to our customers’ well-being,” said Omer Gajial, chief digital officer and executive vice president of health at Albertsons.

[Read more: Albertsons rolls out AI-powered carts in select stores]

“We have administered nearly 14 million COVID-19 vaccines to patients across the country, and we are enhancing the experience this year with specialized scheduling tools and pharmacy care,” Gajial said. “We know vaccines are one of the best ways to keep families healthy this winter, and these enhancements are designed to make it easy for everyone to receive the right vaccinations in a single appointment.”

Pharmacy enhancements and incentives include:

- One stop for vaccinations:

  • Flu season: The quadrivalent flu vaccine, Flublok and Fluzone HD are available. The flu shot is free with most insurance providers;
  • COVID-19 bivalent vaccines: The reformulated boosters from Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech target both the original virus and omicron variants BA.4 and BA.5. The vaccines, along with antigen tests, are available at no cost based on eligibility;
  • COVID-19 therapeutic: Select pharmacies are administering Evusheld, a long-acting monoclonal antibody combination authorized for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 for certain high-risk individuals. Providers can check the HHS COVID-19 Therapeutics Locator to find an Albertsons pharmacy carrying Evusheld, which is provided by the federal government at no cost. Some insurance plans will cover the administration fee, including Medicare Part B; and
  • Other key immunizations: Pharmacists can co-administer additional vaccines at each appointment, including shingles, pneumonia, tetanus and HPV.

[Read more: Retailers begin offering bivalent COVID-19 booster vaccines]

- Scheduling multiple vaccinations:

  • Appointments: Customers can now book appointments for up to five immunizations together using the company’s online scheduler, available on the grocer’s app or website — Pharmacy Scheduler. The scheduler is also able to sort and recommend vaccines that are relevant by age.

- Access to care seven days a week:

  • Walk-ins welcome: Most Albertsons’ pharmacies offer convenient evening and weekend hours, and will be staffed to accommodate short wait times and “walk-in” appointments;
  • Free consultations: Pharmacists are available to discuss clinical-related questions to assist customers in making informed healthcare decisions and will offer consultations on vaccination history and recommend co-administrations to bring key immunizations up to date; and
  • Drive-up clinics: Vaccines may be administered from the comfort and convenience of patients’ cars at participating pharmacy locations.

- Mobile vaccine clinics:

  • Remote services: Local Albertsons’ pharmacists are available to set up and staff vaccine clinics at schools, nursing homes, companies and other organizations to help ensure students, residents and employees have access to these immunizations.

- Grocery discount:

  • Savings incentive: For every immunization received at an Albertsons’ pharmacy, recipients will receive a coupon eligible for 10% off their next grocery purchase up to $200 and access to a free digital vaccine record.

[Read more: Driving vaccination programs  around COVID]

The Centers for Disease Control currently recommends COVID-19 vaccines be given during the same visit with other vaccines, including the flu vaccine, for those eligible. Flu vaccinations are available to children aged 6 months of age, where allowed by state law. Currently, the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine and booster can be administered to patients aged 12 years old, while the Moderna COVID-19 doses are available for patients aged 18 years old and older. An adult must sign a consent and release form for minor patients receiving vaccinations.

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