DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Wednesday donated 375,000 doses of seasonal flu vaccine to Lao People’s Democratic Republic.
Lao PDR health officials have designated the 375,000 doses of donated flu vaccine for people at high risk of flu complications in that country, including pregnant women, seniors and people with such chronic health conditions as heart and lung disease. The Walgreens donation was the result of a longstanding collaboration between the Lao MOH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.
“This is an example of the potential value of collaboration between public health and private organizations,” stated Joe Bresee, chief of the epidemiology and prevention branch in the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's influenza division.
“In recent years, going back to the 2009 H1N1 pandemic, we’ve demonstrated the positive impact we can have by helping to increase flu vaccination coverage while working together with government and health officials at every level,” said Kermit Crawford, Walgreens president of pharmacy, health and wellness. “As flu season winds down here in the United States, we’re pleased to provide vaccine to the people of Laos and to work with the Ministry of Health to help launch its seasonal flu vaccination effort.”
Walgreens has worked with the CDC and the Department of Health and Human Services to help increase the number of people vaccinated against influenza in underserved communities across America. HHS has assisted Walgreens in the distribution of seasonal flu vaccine vouchers in select markets throughout the country the last two years, which provided free flu vaccinations for the uninsured and underinsured.