CHAPEL HILL, N.C. – Want to stick it to the flu? Get a flu shot at your doctor’s office. That’s the message Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) and the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) are sending with their partnership to promote the delivery of flu shots in physicians’ offices.
As the state’s largest health insurer, BCBSNC wants its members to stay healthy this flu season. BCBSNC’s “Stick it to the Flu” program (bcbsnc.com/flu) kicks off in October and runs through December or as long as supplies last.
"A flu shot takes just seconds and is the most effective way to prevent the flu or to keep from passing it on to others,” said Dr. Don Bradley, senior vice president and chief medical officer for BCBSNC. "We are making it easy for our members to get their flu shots and stay healthy by simply visiting their primary care doctor."
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) projects more than 100 million doses of flu vaccine will be available during this flu season. Severe flu can result in pneumonia and dehydration, and can cause complications for those with chronic illnesses. The CDC estimates that more than 200,000 people are hospitalized with the flu each year and that it causes 36,000 deaths annually nationwide.
"When it comes to prevention, a flu shot is a simple but important step toward promoting good health care," said Darlyne Menscer, MD, president of the North Carolina Medical Society. "It's best to get your flu shot at your doctor's office where you can also go for all of your preventive care. It is best to establish a ‘medical home’ where medical care for acute and chronic medical conditions, as well as preventive care, can occur."
Some BCBSNC members will also be able to get shots at their worksite. Members should contact their physician or employer to find out when flu shots will be given or to schedule an appointment. Members need to present their BCBSNC ID card and a photo ID to get the shot. Nearly 500,000 BCBSNC members received flu shots in 2006.
To find out more about receiving a flu shot this flu season, BCBSNC members can visit bcbsnc.com/flu. Physicians interested in hosting a clinic can visit ncmedsoc.org.
About Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina:
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is a leader in delivering innovative health care products, services and information to more than 3.5 million members, including approximately 820,000 served on behalf of other Blue Plans. For 74 years, the company has served its customers by offering health insurance at a competitive price and has served the people of North Carolina through support of community organizations, programs and events that promote good health. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. Access BCBSNC online bcbsnc.com.