With colleges and universities readying for the fall semester, Meijer aims to boost COVID-19 safety by giving students an incentive to get vaccinated.
The Grand Rapids, Mich.-based supercenter retailer said Monday that college students can get a $10-off coupon for any purchase when they complete a full round of the COVID vaccine at a Meijer in-store pharmacy. The coupon program runs until Sept. 30.
To qualify for the coupon, students must have their first COVID shot administered at a Meijer pharmacy by Sept. 30. After their vaccine series is finished, the pharmacy gives students the coupon, which is redeemable in-store for 28 days.
Meijer added that its coupon comes as an increasing number of colleges and universities enact COVID-19 vaccination mandates for its students, faculty and staff.
“Returning to campus is a huge and exciting step toward normalcy following the pandemic that disrupted so much of our lives. But to continue on that path, we encourage everyone who is able to receive the vaccine to take this important step,” Meijer President and CEO Rick Keyes said in a statement. “Our pharmacy teams have dedicated themselves to keeping our communities safe, but there’s more work to be done. We’re hopeful this incentive makes a difference.”
The student coupon marks the second savings incentive from Meijer for COVID immunizations. In May, the chain began offering customers a $10 coupon when they get a full coronavirus vaccination at one of its stores. The company also has been giving a $100 bonus to employees who complete the COVID-19 vaccine process and show their vaccination cards.
To date, Meijer has administered more than 1.7 million doses. The company reported that its pharmacies recently have seen an uptick in COVID-19 vaccinations, with a nearly 20% rise in vaccines administered over the last three weeks. Areas around the country in recent months have grappled with a surge of COVID cases due to the fast spread of the Delta variant of the virus.
“We are highly encouraged by the continued commitment of those in the communities we serve to get vaccinated to protect themselves and those around them,” commented Jackie Morse, vice president of pharmacy at Meijer.
A Federal Retail Pharmacy Program partner for Michigan, Meijer kicked off its COVID vaccine clinics in mid-January. Since then, the retailer has conducted thousands of in-store vaccine clinics, as well as community-based off-site clinics, across all six states in its Midwestern market. Coronavirus shots became available at all Meijer stores in late March, and in late April, COVID vaccines became available on a walk-in basis at all Meijer pharmacies, after 1 million vaccine doses were administered at in-store clinics. Customers also can still go online to schedule a COVID vaccination.
Overall, Meijer operates 257 supercenters and grocery stores in Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Kentucky and Wisconsin.
Through Aug. 8, 58.7% of the U.S. population had received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose, and 50.1% had been fully vaccinated, with 351.4 million vaccines administered of the 407.6 million delivered by manufacturers, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. About 71% of Americans ages 18 and older had gotten at least one shot (61.1% fully vaccinated), while 68.6% of those ages 12 and older have received at least one dose (58.7% fully vaccinated).