Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Health and Human Services Secretary visits Walgreens

US Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius visted our local Walgreen's at State and 75th. One of the featured events included the Sceretary getting a flu shot from Walgreens' health clinic (and promoting )

The visit also highlighted the several changes to the store, including the fresh foods (mention of the Food Deserts, and Sebelius congratulating Walgreens as being an "oasis"), the health clinic (offering easier access to basic health care), and highlighted the new remodeling, which features a more lighted, open space.

Melinda Kelly of the Chatham Business Association spoke at the podium following the Secretary.

Several VIP's attended the event in addition to Walgreens' president, including a Deputy Governor.  Several reporters and photographers were also present, including WGN news and Univision.

Cristal Thomas, Deputy Governor for Public Policy, is on the left while Debbie Garza , Divisional Vice President, Government and Community Relations of Walgreens, speaks with store manager Wayman Freelon

This event was also done in coordination with First Ladies (The wives of prominent Chicago area pastors, including Chatham's Carter Temple).  Here is a link to a recent event, also co-sponsored with Walgreens, the First Ladies led.

Our Walgreens is a popular place to be.  A second event with the Chicago Urban League, was scheduled for later that afternoon at Walgreens. (I was not able to attend that event, so we don't have details)


Here's the Walgreen's press release, sent 2 hours before the event:

photo by JP Paulus

U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius will receive her seasonal flu vaccine and will talk about the importance of prevention measures and flu season preparedness this morning at a Walgreens (NYSE:WAG) (NASDAQ:WAG) "health and daily living" pilot store in Chicago. The Secretary also will tour the store with Walgreens President and CEO Greg Wasson, who will highlight the store's ability to offer accessible, preventive health services such as flu vaccinations and diabetes care in underserved communities.

"It's very exciting to see stores like these built on the principle that good health starts with steps we can all take to avoid getting sick in the first place," said Sebelius. "A perfect example of preventive care is getting your annual flu shot to protect yourself and your loved ones. So we're working closely with pharmacies like Walgreens to make the vaccine widely available in communities across the country."

photo by JP Paulus
"We appreciate Secretary Sebelius recognizing the important role of community pharmacists in health care," said Wasson. "With this pilot store, we are advancing the profession of pharmacy by providing greater accessibility to pharmacists for medication counseling, answering questions and providing additional clinical services."

Pharmacists are on the front lines of health care and among the most trusted professionals as ranked by Gallup's honesty and ethics survey. Especially in medically underserved communities, pharmacies provide critical access to health care services that often go beyond dispensing medication. Walgreens new pilot pharmacy addresses the desire of customers for better products, tools and guidance as they aspire to make healthier choices in their daily lives. The pilot pharmacy also addresses the national focus on prevention and management of chronic diseases, which has highlighted the need for a model of care that is convenient, coordinated and affordable.

More details will be posted when available

Chicago area church First Ladies, including Micheal Newman-Brooksof Canaan Community Church in Englewood (first on the right), as well as John Gremer, Walgreens Director of Community Affairs. photo courtesy of Pastor Jonathan Brooks, Canaan Community Church

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 Joe Zekas ran the real estate news website YoChicago . If you have been following that site and their social media channels i.e. YouTube o...