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Walmart rolls out vaccines starting Friday

By Mike Genet mike.genet@examiner.net

Several area Walmart stores will begin offering COVID-19 vaccine shots starting Friday through the U.S. Federal Retail Pharmacy Program.

Walmart and Sam’s Club stores offering the vaccine are at:

• 4000 and 4100 South Bolger Road, Independence (next to Missouri 291).

• 3411 South Noland Road, Independence (Neighborhood Market at 35th Street and Noland Road).

• 11601 East U.S. 40, Kansas City (Blue Ridge Crossing).

How do I get a vaccine?

To check for availability and to schedule an appointment, visit: www.walmart.com/COVIDvaccine and www.samsclub.com/covid. 

Stores not listed initially include the two locations in Blue Springs, in Oak Grove and in Lee’s Summit.

Thus far, Walmart stores are the only pharmacy in Missouri offering vaccine shots to the general public through the federal program. Federal officials say more pharmacies will be added in the coming weeks and months. Missouri Gov. Mike Parson’s office and the state’s Department of Health and Senior Services say in releases that the state did not choose the pharmacies where vaccines will be distributed.

Retail Pharmacy Program

Neither Walmart or the CDC has specified how many vaccine doses will be available, though the DHSS said in a release that the 102 selected pharmacies across Missouri are scheduled to receive more than 18,000 doses per week. The CDC says that in the early stages of the federal program, pharmacies are receiving limited doses, and more locations will be added as supply increases.

The 18,000 would be in addition to the approximately 76,000 doses the state receives weekly through Operation Warp Speed.

In a release, Walmart said more than 1,000 pharmacies in 22 states are receiving vaccine allocations this week, with an emphasis on locations that can reach customers in underserved communities with limited access to health care. The company said it worked with the CDC to determine initial vaccine locations, “taking into account the population density, customer demographics, infection rates and availability of local health care resources.”