Capital BlueCross and Rite Aid Hosting COVID-19 Vaccine Clinics for General Public
Community-based clinics will serve thousands across Central Pennsylvania and Lehigh Valley
Capital BlueCross and Rite Aid are working together to provide COVID-19 vaccines through community-based clinics that enlist the help of local pharmacists, a model that reflects a newly announced federal strategy for vaccine distribution.
The clinics, which first began in February and will continue through June, will help thousands of Pennsylvanians across Central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley receive their COVID-19 vaccines. The health insurer and drugstore chain are hosting a clinic this week at Capital BlueCross’ TecPort offices in Harrisburg and another next week at Hispanic Center Lehigh Valley in Bethlehem.
The clinics are providing vaccines to anyone who meets Pennsylvania’s current eligibility guidelines and schedules an appointment ahead of time, regardless of whether they are Capital BlueCross members.
“Our goal is to make sure anyone who wants a COVID-19 vaccine can get one as quickly and easily as possible, and these clinics are helping us achieve that goal,” said Capital BlueCross President and CEO Todd Shamash.
The Biden administration announced this week it is expanding a federal program to distribute vaccines through retail pharmacy-based clinics, with plans to have a vaccine site within 5 miles of all Americans by mid-April.
“We’re pleased to continue working with Capital BlueCross on community vaccination clinics that help expand access to the COVID-19 vaccine here in our home commonwealth of Pennsylvania,” said Jocelyn Konrad, executive vice president and chief pharmacy officer, Rite Aid. “These partnerships help us reach eligible COVID-19 vaccine recipients where they live, work and worship, and where they are most comfortable getting vaccinated – right in their own neighborhood. We look forward to continuing this work to help end the pandemic and get Pennsylvania thriving.”
Capital BlueCross and Rite Aid already have administered thousands of vaccines this year through an ongoing series of clinics, each of which vaccinated about 1,000 people. Additional clinics are planned at sites throughout Capital BlueCross’ 21-county service area through at least early June.
“Our vaccine clinics already have given thousands of Pennsylvanians a sense of hope and relief, and we’ll keep at it as long as there is a need for vaccines in our communities,” Shamash said. “Capital BlueCross employee volunteers, along with the professional pharmacists and technicians from Rite Aid, are committed to help bring this pandemic to an end.”
Vaccinations at these clinics are by appointment only and can be made by calling Rite Aid’s scheduling center at 866.674.4659. You do not have to be a Capital BlueCross member or Rite Aid pharmacy customer to register.
While the clinics have vaccinated a broad cross section of eligible Pennsylvanians, Capital BlueCross also has targeted some clinics – such as those earlier this month at the Hamilton Health and Heinz-Menaker Senior centers – toward underserved and harder-to-reach populations.
About Capital BlueCross
Capital BlueCross serves a 21-county region in Central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley by offering health insurance products, services and technology solutions that provide peace of mind to consumers and promote health and wellness for our members. The company delivers innovative solutions through a family of diversified businesses to create healthier lives and lower healthcare costs. Among these solutions are patient-focused care models, leading-edge data analytics and digital health technologies. Additionally, Capital BlueCross Connect health and wellness centers provide in-person service and inspiration to help people reach their health goals. Capital BlueCross is an independent licensee of the BlueCross BlueShield Association.