Vials of hope: COVID-19 vaccinations are rolled out

Vials of hope: COVID-19 vaccinations are rolled out
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With two COVID-19 vaccines now authorized by the FDA for emergency use, CVS Health has stepped up to help administer vaccinations across the country. In this edition of Healthy Communities News, we spotlight the vaccine effort in long-term care facilities. They are among the first to receive the shots, since these facilities have accounted for nearly 40% of the overall fatalities.

Many seniors and their caregivers were thrilled to be given priority in the vaccine rollout. “I want to be the first person on the list,” said Coraline Diggs, a resident at Genesis HealthCare in Maryland. The effort has been a ray of hope for those giving the vaccinations, as well. CVS Pharmacist Jocelyn Schrum is eagerly anticipating a return to more normal times. “I’m looking forward so much to when I can give my patients hugs again.”

Now that vaccines are finally here, we want you to share in the excitement of this historic moment. So, for our first 2021 podcast, we’re taking you behind-the-scenes with Dr. Jocelyn Shrum, one of the CVS pharmacists responsible for training people across the country who make it all work. We speak with her the day after she and her team first administered vaccines in Nashville, Tennessee, where she gets vaccinated herself. Then we check in with Jewel Statham, a nursing assistant, and Julian Holland, a resident at Heartland Promedica in Ohio — who just got vaccinated as well. May listening make you as hopeful for the year ahead as they are.

Tune in and subscribe to our podcast

Listen to Healthy Communities News on the go using your favorite podcast platform.

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An essential long-term care worker receives a COVID-19 vaccination.
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Health care, from the heart

Health care, from the heart
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Our health care system is under unprecedented strain.

Through it all, CVS Health has been there.

We’re nearly 300,000 employees ensuring millions of Americans can access health care services.

We’ve opened 4,700 COVID-19 test sites since March and administered over 10 million tests at our stores and through partners in underserved communities.

With millions staying home, CVS Health is increasing access to prescription delivery, virtual visits and mental health services.

Now, we’re providing vaccines in long-term care facilities nationwide.

We’ve been on the frontlines, making health care easier to access and afford.

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Heart At Work: Bob Atighechi brings hope to nursing homes

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It’s mid-morning, December 18, and a crowd of national press – CNN, NBC, Associated Press, to name a few – are gathered outside the Reservoir Skilled Nursing facility in West Hartford, Connecticut. Governor Ned Lamont, the last of the dignitaries to speak, steps to the podium.
   
Bob Atighechi is there too. Bob is one of a team of CVS pharmacists who will provide among the first COVID-19 vaccinations in the country for residents and staff in long-term care facilities. It’s a new wave of hope for the nation, one that’s been missing since the pandemic began. 

“We’ve been waiting for this day. It’s history,” says Bob. “I’m so lucky to be part of it.” 

The speeches have concluded and Reservoir staff are lined up outside for their first Pfizer-BioNTech vaccination. Their second shot will be administered in three weeks. 

Inside, where it’s sheltered and warm, Jeanne Peters, 95, is the first resident to be inoculated, with Bob’s assistance. “It was no problem,” says Jeanne, brushing off confetti that commemorated the event. “I think everyone who can, should get a shot against the virus – no matter what age.” 

Pharmacists Bob Atighechi and MaryLou Galushko providing a COVID-19 vaccination to Reservoir resident Jeanne Peters December 18, 2020
Pharmacists Bob Atighechi and MaryLou Galushko provide a COVID-19 vaccination to Reservoir resident Jeanne Peters December 18, 2020

Fast forward a few weeks later. Despite the holidays Bob has worked nearly every day, generally starting around 8:00 a.m. and returning home at 7:30 p.m. “We provide about 130 vaccinations daily in nursing homes throughout central Connecticut. They’re relieved and appreciative,” he explains. 

“I have to admit that the idea of receiving a new vaccination was a little bit unnerving despite the amount of education,” explains Amy Peruti, Director of Nursing at Hughes Health & Rehabilitation in West Hartford. “Bob’s confidence and friendliness were a calming force and truly set the stage for a great clinic day.”

Pharmacists Bob Atighechi and MaryLou Galushko applauding Reservoir resident Margaret Dubois who is receiving a COVID-19 vaccination
Pharmacists Bob Atighechi and MaryLou Galushko applaud Reservoir resident Margaret Dubois who received a COVID-19 vaccination December 18, 2020

In the weeks ahead, CVS Health expects to vaccinate up to four million residents and staff at over 40,000 long-term care facilities across the country.
 
But Bob, who has been with the company 14 years, worries. He knows firsthand the exacting toll Coronavirus has already taken on this vulnerable population. In one facility it was whispered that 60 of the 200 residents died from the disease – grandmothers, grandfathers, sisters, brothers – people who were loved. Less talked about, he says, is the fear and stress that have forced staff to retire early – leaving resident care in some locations to just a handful. 

But, what nags him most is the hesitancy. “Only 60 or 70% of the population we see are taking advantage of vaccinations. We need to reach everyone to be effective.” 

He hopes confidence will grow, making way for CVS Health to be able to quickly provide vaccinations to the general population. Among them, his elderly parents in California and eventually his teenagers.

When that day comes, Bob will be there, working to ensure people are safe. “I never dreamed I’d be part of something this important. It really is, you know.”

Thank you, Bob, for bringing your heart to work and offering hope to our loved ones in long-term care.

Heart At Work recognizes CVS Health heroes across the country who bring their hearts to work, helping people on their path to better health. Read their stories, watch their videos and celebrate our CVS Health Heart At Work heroes along with us!

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CVS Health provides update on COVID-19 vaccinations in long-term care facilities

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Company is on track based on federal partnership agreement, with shots in arms increasing daily

WOONSOCKET, R.I., Jan. 6, 2021/PRNewswire/ -- CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) is now administering COVID-19 vaccines in skilled nursing facilities in 49 states, with the rollout beginning in 36 states and Washington, D.C. last week. Start dates were as follows:

  • December 21: Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky, Maine, Nevada, New Hampshire New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Vermon
  • December 23: Maryland
  • December 28: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, Washington, Washington, D.C, Wisconsin
  • January 4: Puerto Rico, Wyoming
     

Start dates were chosen by each state, in addition to which types of long-term care facilities to activate first. The most at-risk patients were prioritized; of the approximately 15,000 skilled nursing facilities nationwide, nearly 8,000 chose to partner with CVS Health. The company expects to complete administration of first doses in skilled nursing facilities by January 25, consistent with timelines originally shared with states and provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

States will have activated nearly 31,000 assisted living facilities partnering with CVS Health by next week, with first doses administered in all facilities within three to four weeks of start dates. Activation dates at the remaining nearly 8,000 CVS Health partner facilities have yet to be determined by states.

"Our work with long-term care facilities isn't a mass vaccination effort quite the opposite," said Larry J. Merlo, President and Chief Executive Officer, CVS Health. "We're dealing with a vulnerable population that requires onsite and, in some cases, in-room visits at facilities with fewer than 100 residents on average. Despite these challenges we remain on schedule, and the number of vaccines we administer will continue to rise as more facilities are activated by the states."

CVS Pharmacy teams will make three visits to each long-term care facility to ensure residents and staff receive their initial shot and critical booster. Most residents and staff will be fully vaccinated three to four weeks after the first visit, depending on which vaccine they receive.

CVS Health has been following COVID-19 vaccination reporting protocols to state immunization registries and the CDC, but what is shared publicly is typically outdated by 48 72 hours. The company will now make national and state-level figures available here, with weekday updates at approximately 4 p.m. ET. While uptake among residents remains encouragingly high, the actual number of residents is approximately 20 30 percent lower than facility projections that were based on bed count. Initial uptake among staff is low, part of which is likely due to facilities wanting to stagger vaccinations between visits.

Per an agreement with the Department of Health and Human Services, COVID-19 vaccines will eventually be available at all CVS Pharmacy locations throughout the country subject to product availability and prioritization of populations, which will be determined by states. No vaccines are currently available at CVS Pharmacy locations, but the company is in discussions with several states to make a limited number of doses available in the coming weeks in advance of the broader rollout. Vaccines in a retail setting will be offered on an appointment-only basis via CVS.com or through the CVS Pharmacy app, and there will be a dedicated 800 number for people without online access. CVS Pharmacy has the capacity to administer 20 - 25 million shots per month.

Multimedia assets, including b-roll and still photography, are available here. More information on steps CVS Health has taken to address the pandemic is available at the company's frequently updated COVID-19 resource center.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a different kind of health care company. We are a diversified health services company with nearly 300,000 employees united around a common purpose of helping people on their path to better health. In an increasingly connected and digital world, we are meeting people wherever they are and changing health care to meet their needs. Built on a foundation of unmatched community presence, our diversified model engages one in three Americans each year. From our innovative new services at HealthHUB locations, to transformative programs that help manage chronic conditions, we are making health care more accessible, more affordable and simply better. Learn more about how we're transforming health at www.cvshealth.com.

Media contact

T.J. Crawford
212-457-0583
crawfordt2@aetna.com

Vaccine administering at a long term care facility
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CVS Health begins administering COVID-19 vaccines in long-term care facilities

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Majority of facilities nationwide have selected CVS Pharmacy as vaccination provider

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) has formally launched its COVID-19 vaccination program for long-term care facilities, whose residents have been disproportionality impacted by the pandemic. CVS Pharmacy teams will administer the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine in facilities across 12 states this week, and the company expects to vaccinate up to four million residents and staff at over 40,000 long-term care facilities through the program.

"Today's rollout is the culmination of months of internal planning and demonstrates how the private sector can use its expertise to help solve some of our most critical challenges," said Larry J. Merlo, President and Chief Executive Officer, CVS Health. "I'm grateful for the herculean efforts of everyone involved, including our health care professionals who will be deployed throughout the country to bring peace of mind to long-term care facility residents, staff, and their loved ones."

CVS Pharmacy teams will make three visits to each long-term care facility to ensure residents and staff receive their initial shot and critical booster. The majority of residents and staff will be fully vaccinated three to four weeks after the first visit, depending on which vaccine they receive. CVS Health expects to complete its long-term care facility vaccination effort in approximately 12 weeks.

CVS Health will administer COVID-19 vaccinations starting this week in the following states: Connecticut, Florida, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Nevada, New Hampshire, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Vermont. Vaccinations will begin in 36 more states, as well as the District of Columbia, on December 28. Puerto Rico will activate on January 4.

The long-term care facility vaccination effort is a precursor to the eventual availability of COVID-19 vaccines at all CVS Pharmacy locations throughout the country subject to product availability and prioritization of populations, which will be determined by states. Vaccines in a retail setting will be offered on an appointment-only basis via CVS.com or through the CVS Pharmacy app, and there will be a dedicated 800 number for people without online access. CVS Pharmacy will have the capacity to administer 20 to 25 million shots per month.

"Vaccinating one of our most vulnerable populations is the latest milestone in our multifaceted pandemic response, which includes testing more than 10 million people for the virus since March," stated Karen S. Lynch, currently Executive Vice President, CVS Health and President, Aetna, who will become the company's next President and CEO on February 1. "The eventual availability of COVID-19 vaccines in communities across the country will bring us one step closer to overcoming the most significant health challenge of our lifetime."

Multimedia assets from a December 18 visit to a long-term care facility in Connecticut are available here, in addition to interviews with CVS Health executives. More information on steps CVS Health has taken to address the pandemic is available at the company's frequently updated COVID-19 resource center.

About CVS Health

CVS Health is a different kind of health care company. We are a diversified health services company with nearly 300,000 employees united around a common purpose of helping people on their path to better health. In an increasingly connected and digital world, we are meeting people wherever they are and changing health care to meet their needs. Built on a foundation of unmatched community presence, our diversified model engages one in three Americans each year. From our innovative new services at HealthHUB locations, to transformative programs that help manage chronic conditions, we are making health care more accessible, more affordable and simply better. Learn more about how we're transforming health at www.cvshealth.com.

Media contact

T.J. Crawford
212-457-0583
crawfordt2@aetna.com

Staff and a resident, the first to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, celebrate at the Reservoir Skilled Nursing Facility in Connecticut.
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Celebrating our impact

Celebrating our impact
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As we reflect on 2020, we’re incredibly grateful for the contributions of our nearly 300,000 colleagues.

Whether they were in our stores, virtual offices or in the community, our colleagues rose to the challenge to support our customers and members when they needed us most.

A CVS Health employee, wearing a face mask, smiles and assists a member with COVID-19 testing.
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Understanding and addressing vaccine hesitancy

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By: Sree Chaguturu, MD Senior Vice President, CVS Health and Chief Medical Officer, CVS Caremark Troy Brennan, MD Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, CVS Health Garth Graham, MD Vice President, Chief Community Health Officer, Aetna

We are now entering a new phase of our collective response to the pandemic. If and when any of the several leading COVID-19 vaccine candidates are approved, manufacturers are expected to ramp up wide-scale production. Many of the public health levers we have used to date to control the pandemic — social distancing, wearing masks, hand hygiene, broad testing and contact tracing — will continue to be important. However, vaccines offer us a new and powerful tool in combating the pandemic. For the country to achieve significant control of COVID-19, widespread adoption of safe and efficacious vaccines across all communities and populations will be critical.

While initial results show the vaccines pending authorization to be both safe and highly efficacious, several reports have emerged suggesting widespread adoption will be difficult due to vaccine hesitancy. Better understanding the reasons behind vaccine hesitancy enables us to implement a targeted campaign to address these concerns and help ensure widespread adoption across communities. We wanted to obtain a clear view of which populations are more or less willing to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, and why they have those particular sentiments.

To do so, we initiated a broad, nationwide survey that is representative of the U.S. population as described by the U.S. Census Bureau. The survey was initiated the day after Pfizer and BioNTech released their first interim efficacy analysis from their Phase-3 study indicating their vaccine candidate was more than 90 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 and had 5,153 participants. The survey was conducted November 10-15, 2020. Its findings allow us to better understand vaccine hesitancy at this point in the pandemic and hence, address it.

While the results showed significant hesitancy across multiple populations — only 28 percent of this general population sample were interested in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it is available — they also gave us the information needed to effectively overcome these barriers. These findings are a snapshot in time and are likely to evolve.

Among survey respondents:

cvs heart

28%

were interested in a vaccine as soon as it is possible

35%

would wait until others had been vaccinated

20%

were uncertain about receiving a vaccination

17%

did not plan on being vaccinated

 

Responses from different demographic groups highlight cultural and ethnic differences in their attitude toward vaccination. Our survey revealed that Black participants were least likely to seek the COVID-19 vaccine, with only 16 percent interested in receiving a vaccine when one is first available, and 29 percent planning to wait before getting vaccinated. Asian responders were most likely to get the vaccine, but were likely to wait and see (51 percent) rather than get one immediately (21 percent).

Based on the findings, it is clear that education and awareness efforts should focus on helping those very interested in getting a vaccine as soon as it is first available understand that certain populations will be prioritized. Individuals who do not meet the priority criteria may not be able to access a vaccine early on. CVS Health plans to address vaccine hesitancy and access through the following:

  • Data and reporting We will continue to periodically survey the nation to update our findings. We will create focus groups — with an emphasis on minority populations — to better understand community-specific concerns. Additionally, we are developing reporting for Aetna and CVS Caremark clients to determine uptake of the vaccine.

  • Targeted messaging Using these and future survey findings, we will develop targeted messaging to be delivered through traditional and digital media outlets and our in-store channels. We will also train nearly 90,000 clinicians — pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, nurse practitioners, and other professionals — to deliver these messages. We will provide vaccine educational materials to Aetna and CVS Caremark plan sponsors to assist them in empowering their own beneficiaries, employees, and dependents.

  • Providers and other influencers as educators We will partner with influencers — including health care providers — and other stakeholders across the country to amplify information about the safety, efficacy, and benefits of COVID-19 vaccines. We will also educate Aetna and CVS Caremark members through a variety of channels including as a health and pharmacy benefit provider, and through Aetna’s contracted network of providers.

  • Convenient access to vaccination services We believe convenient access matters. We are present in communities across the country, with more than 70 percent of Americans living within three miles of a CVS Pharmacy. In addition, nearly 60 percent of CVS Pharmacy locations are in communities more vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19.As determined by the CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index We will provide vaccination services to nearly 30,000 long-term care and skilled nursing facilities in collaboration with the CDC. All of our nearly 10,000 pharmacies will provide vaccination services. Vaccines will be available by appointment only while supply is limited. Patients will be able to sign up online and schedule their follow-up booster shot at the time of initial scheduling.

Read the full white paper, "Understanding and addressing vaccine hesitancy"

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A woman smiling at a practitioner after getting a vaccination, getting a band-aid put on her arm

Understanding and addressing vaccine hesitancy

By: Sree Chaguturu, MD Senior Vice President, CVS Health and Chief Medical Officer, CVS Caremark Troy Brennan, MD Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, CVS Health Garth Graham, MD Vice President, Chief Community Health Officer, Aetna

We are now entering a new phase of our collective response to the pandemic. If and when any of the several leading COVID-19 vaccine candidates are approved, manufacturers are expected to ramp up wide-scale production. Many of the public health levers we have used to date to control the pandemic — social distancing, wearing masks, hand hygiene, broad testing and contact tracing — will continue to be important. However, vaccines offer us a new and powerful tool in combating the pandemic. For the country to achieve significant control of COVID-19, widespread adoption of safe and efficacious vaccines across all communities and populations will be critical.

While initial results show the vaccines pending authorization to be both safe and highly efficacious, several reports have emerged suggesting widespread adoption will be difficult due to vaccine hesitancy. Better understanding the reasons behind vaccine hesitancy enables us to implement a targeted campaign to address these concerns and help ensure widespread adoption across communities. We wanted to obtain a clear view of which populations are more or less willing to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, and why they have those particular sentiments.

To do so, we initiated a broad, nationwide survey that is representative of the U.S. population as described by the U.S. Census Bureau. The survey was initiated the day after Pfizer and BioNTech released their first interim efficacy analysis from their Phase-3 study indicating their vaccine candidate was more than 90 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 and had 5,153 participants. The survey was conducted November 10-15, 2020. Its findings allow us to better understand vaccine hesitancy at this point in the pandemic and hence, address it.

While the results showed significant hesitancy across multiple populations — only 28 percent of this general population sample were interested in receiving the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as it is available — they also gave us the information needed to effectively overcome these barriers. These findings are a snapshot in time and are likely to evolve.

Among survey respondents:

cvs heart

28%

were interested in a vaccine as soon as it is possible

35%

would wait until others had been vaccinated

20%

were certain about receiving a vaccination

17%

did not plan on being vaccinated

Responses from different demographic groups highlight cultural and ethnic differences in their attitude toward vaccination. Our survey revealed that Black participants were least likely to seek the COVID-19 vaccine, with only 16 percent interested in receiving a vaccine when one is first available, and 29 percent planning to wait before getting vaccinated. Asian responders were most likely to get the vaccine, but were likely to wait and see (51 percent) rather than get one immediately (21 percent). 

Based on the findings, it is clear that education and awareness efforts should focus on helping those very interested in getting a vaccine as soon as it is first available understand that certain populations will be prioritized. Individuals who do not meet the priority criteria may not be able to access a vaccine early on. CVS Health plans to address vaccine hesitancy and access through the following:

 

  • Data and reporting We will continue to periodically survey the nation to update our findings. We will create focus groups — with an emphasis on minority populations — to better understand community-specific concerns. Additionally, we are developing reporting for Aetna and CVS Caremark clients to determine uptake of the vaccine.

  • Targeted messaging Using these and future survey findings, we will develop targeted messaging to be delivered through traditional and digital media outlets and our in-store channels. We will also train nearly 90,000 clinicians — pharmacists, pharmacy technicians, nurse practitioners, and other professionals — to deliver these messages. We will provide vaccine educational materials to Aetna and CVS Caremark plan sponsors to assist them in empowering their own beneficiaries, employees, and dependents.

  • Providers and other influencers as educators We will partner with influencers — including health care providers — and other stakeholders across the country to amplify information about the safety, efficacy, and benefits of COVID-19 vaccines. We will also educate Aetna and CVS Caremark members through a variety of channels including as a health and pharmacy benefit provider, and through Aetna’s contracted network of providers.

  • Convenient access to vaccination services We believe convenient access matters. We are present in communities across the country, with more than 70 percent of Americans living within three miles of a CVS Pharmacy. In addition, nearly 60 percent of CVS Pharmacy locations are in communities more vulnerable to the impacts of COVID-19.As determined by the CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index We will provide vaccination services to nearly 30,000 long-term care and skilled nursing facilities in collaboration with the CDC. All of our nearly 10,000 pharmacies will provide vaccination services. Vaccines will be available by appointment only while supply is limited. Patients will be able to sign up online and schedule their follow-up booster shot at the time of initial scheduling.

Read white paper, "Understanding and addressing vaccine hesitancy".

COVID-19 vaccines arrive: CVS Health is ready

COVID-19 vaccines arrive: CVS Health is ready
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Since March, pharmacy technician Alysses Goree and her colleagues have administered thousands of COVID-19 tests and flu vaccines in nursing homes across Houston.

With long-term care facilities accounting for nearly 40% of COVID-19 deaths, residents long for safer environments – and their families, she says. “It’s heartbreaking. All they want is a conversation and a hug.”

With Monday’s nationwide rollout of the first COVID-19 vaccine, manufactured by Pfizer and BioNTech, help is finally arriving. 

Alysses Goree standing at an outdoor CVS Health vaccination location.
Pharmacy Technician Alysses Goree has administered COVID-19 tests to hundreds of Omnicare residents and staff and will provide vaccinations

Retail pharmacies like CVS Pharmacy will play a critical role in vaccinating Americans on a massive scale. “We are 100% staffed right now for long-term care facilities,” Goree says of her local team. “We’re prepared, we understand the environment and we’re going out to help save peoples’ lives and help them see their families.”

CVS Pharmacy was selected to administer COVID-19 vaccinations by more than 40,000 long-term care facilities. 

“We're really excited to be a critical part of providing these services to a majority of the facilities in the country,” says Dr. Sree Chaguturu, Chief Medical Officer of Caremark at CVS Health.

The company will also help deliver vaccines to the general public later in 2021 at no charge to patients. About 70% of Americans live within three miles of a CVS Pharmacy.

As a company that shifted during 2020 to meet people where they are, CVS Health is uniquely prepared for this pivotal moment. This year, the company will administer nearly 20 million vaccines and has delivered more than 9 million COVID-19 tests at over 4,300 drive-thru sites and mobile walk-in kiosks nationwide, many within underserved communities. It also created a digital scheduling system and hired thousands of pharmacists and technicians.

“We've learned a lot from the COVID-19 testing process that we're going to pull forward as part of the COVID-19 vaccination process,” says Sree.

The same digital app created to schedule tests and flu shots, for example, will provide online scheduling for both doses of the vaccine.

“Think of it like a round-trip ticket that ensures a seamless experience when you walk into a CVS Pharmacy,” Sree explains. “In five minutes or so, you will be able to get your vaccine, a bandage, and be on your way.”

The moment feels historic, says Goree. “Thirty years from now, I will be able to say that I helped save lives during the pandemic. I’m so proud.”

A senior man about to get a vaccination from a long-term care nurse.
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Aetna helps members access COVID-19-related care through new and extended waivers

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Aetna, a CVS Health company, announced that it is waiving member cost-sharing related to the COVID-19 vaccination for Commercial and Medicaid members. For Medicare, CMS has indicated it will cover the full cost of the vaccine for all Medicare beneficiaries, including those in a Medicare Advantage plan, in 2020 and 2021.

In addition, Aetna extended a series of cost-share waivers as part of its continued steps to help members access the care they need during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Extended waivers include:

  • Waiving member cost-sharing for inpatient admissions for treatment of COVID-19 or health complications associated with COVID-19 for Commercial insured and Medicare Advantage plan members, through January 31, 2021.

  • Waiving member cost-sharing for covered in-network telemedicine visits for outpatient behavioral and mental health counseling services for Commercial insured plan members, through January 31, 2021.

  • Waiving member cost-sharing for covered in-network telemedicine visits for medical and behavioral health services for Aetna Student Health plan members through January 31, 2021.

  • Waiving member cost-sharing for in-network telemedicine visits for Medicare Advantage members for specialist visits, which includes mental and behavioral health providers, through January 31, 2021.

  • Waiving Medicare Advantage member cost-sharing for all in-network primary care visits, whether done in-office and via telehealth, for any reason, through January 31, 2021.

  • Aetna continues to waive member cost-sharing for diagnostic testing related to COVID-19 for Commercial, Medicare and Medicaid members.

We are closely monitoring the progress of the pandemic, federal and state policies and the associated impact on our members, customers and providers. We’ll continue to adjust our policies, as appropriate, to ensure access to care.

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