BROOKLYN, N.Y., Nov. 5, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Medly Pharmacy, a full-service, digital pharmacy that offers free same-day prescription delivery, announced the second round of an innovative flu shot program to ensure all residents across New York City are protected from influenza. Medly and EmblemHealth, one of the nation’s largest not-for-profit health insurers, joined forces with Assemblywoman Latrice Walker and New York City Council Member Alicka Ampry-Samuel, who are sponsoring the events in Brownsville to help ensure every resident gets a flu vaccine who needs one.
Medly and EmblemHealth are working with Assemblywoman Walker and Councilwoman Ampry-Samuel to bring education and needed resources to tackle the stark flu disparities that historically exist in communities of color, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Studies have also shown that people living in high poverty areas were at higher risk for severe flu outcomes suggesting that socioeconomic status may be a factor — which Medly and EmblemHealth aim to tackle in their local communities with this new program.
“Getting the flu shot this year should be a non-negotiable,” said Dr. Marg Patel, CEO and Cofounder of Medly. “But, unfortunately, healthcare access isn’t equal across the city. Medly and EmblemHealth are proud to work with Assemblywoman Latrice Walker and Councilwoman Alicka Ampry-Samuel, who are dedicated city leaders that work tirelessly to ensure their constituents stay safe this flu season.”
“Pharmacy deserts are real, and it is imperative to do everything possible to fill the gap,” said George Hulse, EmblemHealth Vice President and Senior Advisor to the CEO. “If you think about the detriment a “Twindemic” poses, between COVID-19 and the flu, we have to act now to reach our most disadvantaged communities. Brownsville, Brooklyn has the greatest concentration of public housing in the country, but often the least access to healthcare resources. Let’s start to change that narrative.”
For many New Yorkers, pharmacists are the face of healthcare. Each year pharmacists deliver 25% of all flu vaccines. In 2019, estimates said that there could be 100 million people without reasonable access to a pharmacy. These pharmacy deserts are more common in lower-income and minority neighborhoods, in part because of a lack of insurance coverage and pharmacy reimbursement. Pharmacy shortages impact who has access to vaccines and needed medications, which is why outreach in underserved communities is critical.
“COVID-19 underscored and exacerbated the deep disparities between New York City’s wealthy and low-income communities,” said Assemblywoman Latrice Walker. “With the threat of another epidemic, influenza, on the horizon — it’s essential that we have equitable access to preventative healthcare. I applaud Medly Pharmacy and EmblemHealth for addressing this great need, and I’m excited to help drive this initiative forward.”
“An influenza outbreak coupled with COVID-19 and its uncertain future has the potential to devastate our city’s communities, but not every community will be in the same boat,” said New York City Council Member Alicka Ampry-Samuel. “Corners of Brooklyn had some of the highest death rates in the city from COVID-19, and it’s my duty to ensure my hometown is better prepared for this flu season than ever before. I am eager to get to work on November 6 with Medly and EmblemHealth.”
Medly pharmacists will be on-site administering the vaccination, and available for any questions associated with the virus. The event will take place at the following location:
Nov. 6 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Van Dyke Community Center
392 Blake Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11212
Participants will receive the vaccination either free or at low cost based on their insurance plans. For more information and event details, please visit www.medlypharmacy.com/flushot.
About Medly Pharmacy Medly Pharmacy is a full-service, digital pharmacy that delivers a patient’s prescriptions to their door for free on the same day, in New York City, New Jersey, Philadelphia and Baltimore. The digital experience makes managing prescriptions simple, efficient, smart and most importantly, safe for customers. More information can be found at www.medlypharmacy.com.
About EmblemHealth EmblemHealth is one of the nation’s largest nonprofit health insurers, with 3.2 million members and an 80-year legacy of serving New York’s communities. The company offers a full range of commercial and government-sponsored health plans to employers, individuals and families, as well as convenient community resources. As a market leader in value-based care, EmblemHealth partners with top doctors and hospitals to deliver quality, affordable care. For more information, visit emblemhealth.com.
Media Contact: Baxter Townsend Baxter@Tuskstrategies.com (631) 697-8530