Partnership Strengthens Efforts to Fight Flu with Flu Clinics Throughout the Bronx
NEW YORK, September 30, 2016 - More than 2,000 Bronx residents were admitted to Montefiore with the flu last year. Thousands missed school, work and important events because of something preventable: the flu. This year, Montefiore is expanding its collaboration with Walgreens and Duane Reade, mobilizing local health data, and enlisting community based organizations and to make the best tool against flu, the vaccine, more accessible than ever. The main message behind this year’s push is that when you protect yourself, you also protect your family and your community.
“If everyone in the community gets the flu shot, we not only protect ourselves, we also protect vulnerable people like infants and the very sick and elderly, who can’t receive the vaccine. For these populations, the flu can cause serious complications, including pneumonia and even death,” said Amanda Parsons, M.D., M.B.A., vice president of Community & Population Health, Montefiore Health System. “We are excited to build on a great partnership with Walgreens and Duane Reade, and community based organizations to make sure that Bronx residents have easy access to flu vaccinations. It’s the safest, most effective way to prevent getting the flu.”
In 2015, Montefiore hosted ten flu clinics. This year, that number has more than doubled to 22. Walgreens and Duane Reade pharmacists will give flu shots at no cost to the uninsured and underinsured. Flu clinics are scheduled in neighborhoods that have higher rates of emergency room visits, with the goal of vaccinating more than 500 residents this season.
Several clinics will be accompanied by educational workshops where Montefiore community health nurse educators will discuss flu prevention methods and answer questions.
“I never thought I needed the flu vaccine,” said Geraldine O’Connell R.N., nurse educator, Montefiore Health System, who started getting the vaccine after her husband was bedridden for a week with the flu. “I wish someone told me years ago that you can transmit the flu even when you are feeling well, or that the flu vaccine will not actually give you the flu.” O’Connell now educates hundreds of Bronx residents about the vaccine every year.
Montefiore’s Top Tips to Combat Flu include:
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To find a Walgreens and Duane Reade flu clinic near you, or to meet with a nurse educator in-person, please refer to schedule below or call: (347) 418-4740.