Walgreens launches weekly flu index

December 2, 2014

Walgreens announced that it has started ranking states and specific markets based on the number of flu cases.

Walgreens announced that it has started ranking states and specific markets based on the number of flu cases.

The weekly flu index will provide information on both the areas with largest weekly increases in flu cases and the areas with most flu cases.

“This weekly report can help alert health officials and the public in areas where flu activity is trending the most,” said Richard Ashworth, Walgreens president of retail and pharmacy operations. “With the ability to generate hyperlocal data that’s as specific as a single ZIP code, the Walgreens Flu Index can become a platform to improve preventive health measures throughout the season, including immunization rates.”

Walgreens gathers the information by surveying 8,100 stores for state data and 7,200 stores for market data. Several states are not included in the index because they do not have markets with at least 20 Walgreens locations.

According to the first flu index, Louisiana, Texas, and Mississippi have the most flu cases. Harlingen-Weslaco-Brownsville-McAllen, Texas, New Orleans, Tallahassee, Fla., and Thomasville, Ga. were the markets with the most flu cases during the last week of November.

Walgreens weekly Flu index