• Premera Simplifies Access to Common Vaccines at Pharmacies

    Streamlined Process Makes Pharmacy Immunizations More Convenient and Accessible

    MOUNTLAKE TERRACE, WA – (Oct. 12, 2010) – Premera Blue Cross is announcing a new step to remove barriers to care by providing improved access to common immunizations at pharmacies. Premera members can now simply present their member card at a pharmacy – just as they do at their doctor’s office – to receive immunizations.

    “We want members to have convenient access to important, preventive immunizations,” said Ed Wong, Premera’s Vice President for Pharmacy Services. “Immunizations administered at pharmacies used to require members to pay the cost in full, and then fill out a paper claim for reimbursement. That meant more work for our members to be reimbursed.”

    Members can obtain vaccines for seasonal flu, adult shingles or pneumococcal immunization at discounted pricing through pharmacies in Premera’s network offering such services. Examples of applicable retail pharmacies include: Bartell Drugs, Walgreens, Costco, Target, Rite Aid, Fred Meyer and CVS pharmacies.

    “While children are more likely to have a visit with their doctor that includes immunizations, many adults will find value in this opportunity for easier access to vaccines,” added Wong. This new streamlined process reduces both hassle and significant out-of-pocket costs for members seeking more expensive adult vaccines, such as for shingles, which can cost approximately $192 a dose.

    This new step is another way Premera is working to control costs for our members and create a sustainable healthcare system. Obtaining immunizations at the pharmacy is not only more convenient for many members, it helps reduce administrative costs associated with claims processing and takes advantage of discounted pricing through network pharmacies.

    About Premera Blue Cross

    Our mission is to provide peace of mind to our members about their healthcare coverage. We provide health insurance and related services to more than 1.5 million people. Premera Blue Cross has operated in Washington since 1933, and Alaska since 1952. Premera Blue Cross is a not-for-profit, independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Premera Blue Cross is a member of a family of companies based in Mountlake Terrace, Washington, that provide health, life, vision, dental, stop-loss, disability, and other related products and services.