Issaquah pharmacies offer inexpensive whooping cough vaccine to uninsured patients
May 30, 2012
By Warren Kagarise
NEW — 9 a.m. May 30, 2012
Local pharmacies joined a Public Health – Seattle & King County effort to combat the whooping cough epidemic in Washington by offering inexpensive vaccines to people without health insurance or patients unable to afford the vaccine.
Local QFC and Bartell Drugs pharmacies offer inexpensive adult whooping cough booster shots, known as the Tdap vaccine. The vaccination program is made available with assistance from the AmeriCares patient assistance program, a nonprofit humanitarian aid program.
Bartell Drugs, 5700 E. Lake Sammamish Parkway S.E., offers the low-cost vaccine to patients 14 and older. QFC, 1540 N.W. Gilman Blvd. and 4570 Klahanie Drive S.E., offers the low-cost vaccine to patients 11 and older.
Pharmacies and health care providers and may charge a fee up to $15.60 to administer the vaccine. In comparison, the normal cost of Tdap without insurance ranges from $60 to $100. People unable to afford the administration fee can ask to have the fee waived.
The vaccine protects against whooping cough, or pertussis.
Pertussis is highly contagious and spreads easily from person to person through coughing and sneezing. The disease is most serious for infants, especially children too young to receive the vaccination. Pertussis causes cold-like systems followed by a long, severe cough.
The pertussis vaccine, Tdap, is recommended for all children and adults.
State health officials recommend for people 11 and older to get a pertussis booster. The vaccination is especially important for people in close contact with infants younger than 12 months.
In addition to pharmacies offering the low-cost vaccine, other locations offer the vaccine at full cost for insured patients.