Students from the University of Kansas School of Pharmacy have teamed up with the United Way of the Plains and the Wichita Academy of Pharmacists to deliver free flu vaccines to those in need on Saturday, Oct. 20 at the Guadalupe Clinic in Wichita.
The United Way of the Plains provided $6,500 to help purchase approximately 500 doses of influenza vaccine, which members of KU’s Academy of Student Pharmacists will administer under the supervision of certified pharmacists. The vaccinations will be given at no cost from 9 a.m. to 1 pm. at 940 S. Francis St. The vaccines will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis while supplies last. Children must be at least six-years-old and accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Pam Stanberry, executive director of the Guadalupe Clinic, encourages those who might not otherwise be able to afford a vaccine to take advantage of this opportunity, even if they do not consider themselves to be at risk for health complications that can accompany the flu.
“It is important for all of us to help do our part in preventing the spread of the flu to others who may be compromised in their ability to handle it,” Stanberry said.
KU School of Pharmacy Dean Ken Audus said the annual flu vaccine clinic serves 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.”
Associate Dean of the Wichita Campus Robert Emerson said students from both the Lawrence and Wichita campuses will participate in the Saturday’s event.
“Service to the community is something we expect of every student in our program,” Emerson said. “Whether the event is in Wichita, Lawrence, or anywhere in the state, all of our students share in those responsibilities.”
This is the fourth year that KU’s Academy of Student Pharmacists and the United Way of the Plains have offered the Operation Immunization clinic. The event, in collaboration with the Wichita Academy of Pharmacists, the Guadalupe Clinic, the KU School of Medicine-Wichita JayDoc Community Clinic and the Wichita State University School of Nursing is aimed at people who are unemployed, uninsured or unable to pay.
Additional support for the immunization clinic is provided by Wesley Medical Center, Via Christi Health, Dandurand Drugstore, Walgreens, Dillons, Walmart and Retractable Technologies.