ELITE Master Educator Colleen Weyand of Merck

Colleen Weyand

Associate Director, Pharmacy Solutions




Raising Awareness of Adult Vaccinations

Vaccinations are most often associated with children, but the truth—even if few realize it—is that adults need vaccinations as well. Colleen Weyand has made it her mission to find innovative ways to reach adults with information about vaccines that may be relevant to them.

Colleen has been leading the way in helping consumers better understand pneumococcal disease and shingles by providing clear, accurate, and timely communication—not “medical terminology” that may go over their heads. She understands that the focus needs to be on direct messaging focused on making consumers aware about conditions that may be prevented through immunization. To do that, she zeroed in on a space where a person’s health is always top of mind—the pharmacy. Colleen and the Merck team developed an extensive communication platform in the pharmacy setting. One example of this work: A shelf display featuring former NFL quarterback Terry Bradshaw, encouraging people to talk to a doctor or pharmacist about shingles.

But one of the challenges with marketing vaccines is the multitude of ever-changing legal and regulatory factors that must be taken into consideration. For example, in the case of shingles, pharmacy immunization regulations vary by state and even within a state can vary based on the age of the patient. Colleen navigated her solutions team perfectly when working on a pharmacy program for the shingles vaccination Zostavax, by creating different versions of the resource to be used in different states. This could have been a recipe for confusion, but thanks to Colleen it was a well-executed program.

“Colleen’s work has helped to advance the field of vaccination education,” says Peter Messina, Executive Director, Sales at Rx EDGE Pharmacy Networks. “Not only that, she is a great communicator and just a pleasure to work with, highly respected among her colleagues at Merck as well as by those of us in external-provider capacities. She is also extremely responsive, pays attention to deadlines, and knows how to keep projects moving along—all much-appreciated traits when you’re trying to get programs out the door in a timely way.”


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