Walgreens, Chicago Public Schools and Chicago Department of Public Health
Team to Help Parents Meet New State Requirements for Whooping Cough
Campaign to heighten awareness and provide greater access through Walgreens
points of care, events at CPS locations and community partner clinics
DEERFIELD, Ill. -- August 20, 2013
Walgreens (NYSE: WAG)(Nasdaq: WAG), Chicago Public Schools (CPS) and the
Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) are teaming up to help parents of
students grades 6-12 meet a new Illinois state requirement for Tdap
vaccinations, which help to protect against whooping cough.
The mandate comes as the number of whooping cough cases in Illinois have
almost doubled over the past two years, part of a national trend that has seen
the highest levels of illness in more than 50 years. Students will be required
to show proof of having received a single dose of the Tdap vaccine, which
protects against pertussis (whooping cough), tetanus and diphtheria, or have
an approved religious or medical exemption on file by Oct. 15.
Walgreens, CPS and CDPH, building on a collaborative health initiative around
flu last year, aim to heighten awareness around the importance of getting the
Tdap vaccine prior to the start of the school year Aug. 26, by providing
greater and more convenient access to vaccinations through a number of
programs and events. These include:
*Events being held at select CPS locations with Walgreens pharmacists on
hand to administer vaccines to students in need
*Walgreens and CDPH hosting immunization clinics throughout the city to
provide vaccines to students in need
*The CDPH Care Van touring parks, schools and businesses to offer free
mobile immunization clinics in communities across Chicago
*Ten Walgreens stores in Chicago are being enrolled in the federally funded
Vaccine for Children program, to help provide greater access to the Tdap
vaccine for communities in need. The program provides vaccinations for
eligible children up to 18 years of age.
More information is available at www.cityofchicago.org/health.
“In Chicago, more cases of whooping cough were reported last year than in the
prior three years combined,” said Dr. Julie Morita, medical director for the
CDPH Immunization Program. “Making sure that children receive the Tdap vaccine
is one of the most important things parents can do to protect their children.
When our students are healthier, our classrooms,schoolsand communities will
There were 2,026 whooping cough cases reported across Illinois in 2012,
according to the Illinois Department of Public Health, the highest in the
state since 1950. Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a highly contagious and
potentially serious illness that is easily transmitted.
The Tdap vaccine is the most effective way to help prevent the illness, and
health officials warn that those who aren’t immunized are not only at
increased risk for disease, it also increases risk for spreading of the
disease within the classroom or the community.
“Walgreens is playing an important role in helping to prevent this serious
illness, providing greater access to vaccine in the Chicago area and
throughout Illinois. We have more than 600 points of care statewide including
our pharmacies and Healthcare Clinics that routinely offer the Tdap vaccine
and other immunizations year-round,” said Harry Leider, MD, chief medical
officer, Walgreens. “Access to this and other vaccines, as well as
out-of-pocket costs are barriers for many families, and through this
collaboration with CDPH and CPS, we’re focused on making the back-to-school
season easier while helping more students and their families get, stay and
A Tdap booster vaccine is recommended for adults and adolescents to protect
against whooping cough, and is especially important for those in contact with
infants younger than 12 months of age. A dose of Tdap is also recommended for
Immunizations are covered by most insurance plans as well as Medicaid. Parents
are advised to contact their insurance provider or talk with a Walgreens
pharmacist if they have questions.
CDPH immunizations are free for all children from birth through 18 years of
age. Parents should bring immunization records for each child being served.
The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) works to make Chicago a safer
and healthier place by working with community partners to promote health,
prevent disease, reduce environmental hazards and ensure access to health care
for all Chicagoans. Visit us atwww.cityofchicago.org/healthto learn more
about how CDPH is transforming the health of our city.
As the nation's largest drugstore chain with fiscal 2012 sales of $72 billion,
Walgreens (www.walgreens.com) vision is to be the first choice for health and
daily living for everyone in American and beyond. Each day, Walgreens provides
more than 6 million customers the most convenient, multichannel access to
consumer goods and services and trusted, cost-effective pharmacy, health and
wellness services and advice in communities across America. Walgreens scope of
pharmacy services includes retail, specialty, infusion, medical facility and
mail service, along with respiratory services. These services improve health
outcomes and lower costs for payers including employers, managed care
organizations, health systems, pharmacy benefit managers and the public
sector. The company operates 8,105 drugstores in all 50 states, the District
of Columbia and Puerto Rico. Take Care Health Systems is a Walgreens
subsidiary that is the largest and most comprehensive manager of worksite
health and wellness centers and in-store convenient care clinics, with more
than 700 locations throughout the country.
Jim Cohn, 847-315-2950
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