WOONSOCKET, R.I., Nov. 7, 2011 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --
Following a bill signed into law last May, Texas will become the first state in the country to require that all college students receive one dose or booster of the meningococcal vaccine for bacterial meningitis. In response, MinuteClinic has prepared all Texas-based walk-in medical clinics inside select CVS/pharmacy stores for an increased demand for the vaccine as the requirement goes into effect on Jan. 1, 2012.
Bacterial meningitis is a disease caused by the inflammation of the membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord that can spread rapidly resulting in serious health consequences. According to the CDC, young adults living and going to class on crowded college campuses and surrounded by individuals from various geographic areas are at highest risk for the disease.
Previous Texas law required those living in campus dorms to receive a meningococcal vaccination.The new mandate expands the provision to all students entering any college or university, including new students, community and junior college students, commuting students, transferring students and students who may not have lived in a Texas college dorm previously. Students enrolled exclusively in online or other distance education courses, and those 30 years of age or older are exempt.
Texas students must provide their college or university evidence of a vaccination within the last five years no later than 10 days prior to the first day of the 2012 semester or term.
MinuteClinic has 41walk-in clinic locations inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in the Austin, Dallas-Fort Worth and Houston metro regions located within a 20-mile radius of 63 Texas colleges and universities. Ample supply of meningitis vaccine is available at these clinics and the more than 600 MinuteClinic locations inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in 26 states and the District of Columbia.
"We know nearly 1.5 million students entered college in Texas this past fall, and 70,000 more are expected to start in spring 2012," said Angela Patterson, nurse practitioner and MinuteClinic regional manager. "MinuteClinic makes it easy for students to fulfill this vaccination requirement by making meningitis vaccinations available seven days a week with no appointment necessary and providing students the proper documentation to submit to their school."
The cost to receive the required meningitis vaccination at MinuteClinic is $147, or an insurance co-pay. Most major insurance will cover all or part of the cost. Students are encouraged to contact their health insurance provider to confirm coverage prior to visiting MinuteClinic.
MinuteClinic is a division of CVS Caremark Corporation (NYSE: CVS), the largest pharmacy health care provider in the United States. MinuteClinic launched the first retail medical clinics in the United States in 2000 and is the largest provider of retail clinics, with more than 600 locations in 25 states and the District of Columbia. By creating a health care delivery model that responds to patient needs, MinuteClinic makes access to high-quality medical treatment easier for more Americans. Nationally, the company has generated more than 10 million patient visits, with a 95% customer satisfaction rating. MinuteClinic consistently brings innovation to the marketplace and sets new standards for clinical quality that exceed national guidelines. MinuteClinic is the first retail health care provider to receive accreditation (2006) and reaccreditation (2009) from The Joint Commission, the national evaluation and certifying agency for nearly 15,000 health care organizations and programs in the United States. For more information, visit www.MinuteClinic.com.