East Arkansas Family Health Center (EAFHC), one of Community Health Centers of Arkansas’ 11 member organizations across the state, has recently formed a partnership with the Arkansas chapter of American College of Physicians and Walgreens to help increase flu shots and other immunizations among adults in Arkansas as part of the ACP’s I Raise the Rates initiative.

This partnership came about during National Influenza Vaccination Week, and by joining the I Raise the Rates program, EAFHC will make sure that all of their adult patients receive recommended vaccines.

“Our patients deserve to be protected from the flu, pneumonia, shingles and other vaccine-preventable illnesses,” said Dr. Susan Ward-Jones, Chief Executive Officer of EAFHC. “We are proud to work with the ACP to help our patients.”

Walgreens has donated 600 influenza vouchers that can be redeemed at any of its pharmacy locations in Arkansas to assist participating physicians in vaccinating patients who may not be able to afford a flu shot.

“The donation from Walgreens will really help my physician colleagues participating in the I Raise the Rates program to protect all of their patients from the flu and keep them healthy,” said Dr. Omar Atiq, Governor of the ACP Arkansas organization and oncologist from Pine Bluffs. “Many people do not realize the risk posed by the flu and other vaccine-preventable diseases, especially to older individuals and patients with heart disease, emphysema, and cancer. Vaccines can help prevent illness, pain, hospitalizations, and death from the flu, pneumonia, shingles and others.”

I Raise the Rates is a multi-state program, supported by Pfizer, Inc., that helps physicians and their health care teams increase immunizations among their patients. ACP physicians and other health care providers across Arkansas, along with the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, are working on this program. Over the next year, health care providers throughout Arkansas will receive training on immunizations, implement programs in their offices and institutions, and communicate with employers, health insurers, and the public about the importance of adult immunizations. To learn more about I Raise the Rates: Arkansas or to join the campaign, please contact Dr. Atiq at otatiq@gmail.com.

EAFHC has been dedicated for 40 years to providing high quality health care to all in the communities it serves. With six primary care clinics, EAFHC provides primary care to the residents of Crittenden, Poinsett, Mississippi, and Phillips counties. For more information, visit www.eafhc.org.