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KU Students To Offer Free Flu Shots In Southwest Kansas Saturday

KSCB News - September 18, 2014 10:13 pm

Students from the University of Kansas School of Pharmacy will be in southwest Kansas Saturday to provide free flu shots to people who might not otherwise be able to afford them.

Students from the University of Kansas School of Pharmacy will be in southwest Kansas Saturday to provide free flu shots to people who might not otherwise be able to afford them.

The project is an expansion of the school’s annual Operation Immunization program, through which students offer free flu shots to Wichita-area residents.

About 40 students from the school’s American Pharmacists Association Academy of Student Pharmacists will host flu shot clinics in Garden City, Dodge City and Liberal. Vaccinations will be given from 9 a.m. to 2 pm. at The Learning Center, 308 W. Frontview in Dodge City, The United Methodist Mexican-American Ministries Community Health Clinic, 712 St. John St. in Garden City, and Southwest Medical Center, 315 W. 15th St. in Liberal. The vaccines will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis to all eligible patients while supplies last. People younger than 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

School of Pharmacy Dean Ken Audus said the annual flu vaccine clinics serve a dual purpose.

“Operation Immunization provides a much-needed service to the community,” Audus said. “But these events, along with clinical rotations, also serve to remind students that the practice of pharmacy is about more than just what they learn in the classroom. It’s also about patient interaction and care.”

The event, in collaboration with the UMMAM Ministries, is aimed at people who are unemployed, uninsured or unable to pay. School of Pharmacy Associate Dean Robert Emerson said students hope to administer close to 2,000 doses with the goal of promoting healthy environments and ensuring that those most at risk for flu complications have access to the vaccine.

“The elderly and the very young are often hit the hardest during flu season, and they are at an increased risk for complications,” he said. “We want to ensure that everyone who wants to be vaccinated can be vaccinated.”

The pharmacy school has hosted Operation Immunization in Wichita for the past six years. The expansion to Garden City, Dodge City and Liberal was made possible by a grant provided through the KU Chancellor’s Office with funding from the Dane G. Hansen Foundation.

Additional support for the immunization clinic is provided by the schools of nursing from Garden City Community College, Seward County Community College and Dodge County Community College, in addition to Walgreens, CVS, Dillons, Target, Plaza Pharmacy and Gibson’s Pharmacy.

 

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