A third of Portuguese get flu jab in pharmacy


Pharmacist administers a vaccine. Source: PSA.
Pharmacist administers a vaccine. Source: PSA.

FIP is marking World Immunization Week by posting on social media about how pharmacists help boost vaccine coverage

International Pharmaceutical Federation president Dr Carmen Peña has announced that the organisation will post messages from pharmacy leaders around the world during the week, which runs from April 24 to 30.

These messages will share the outcomes of pharmacists administering vaccines in different countries.

“According to the World Health Organization, global vaccination coverage has stalled,” Dr Peña says. “In some countries, coverage even decreased following misinformation campaigns.”

Increasing vaccination coverage could prevent a further 1.5 million deaths, she says – and pharmacists can help.

“Governments are facing outbreaks of diseases previously controlled by vaccination coverage and they are interested in solutions.

“As the most accessible health care professionals, pharmacists play a key role in educating patients on vaccination and identifying those who could benefit most.

“In some countries, pharmacists are also giving vaccinations and studies have found that these have increased coverage.”

Pharmacist vaccination also helps in the fight against antimicrobial resistance, she says – and when pharmacists have vaccination rights they add value to the health of communities.

Dr Peña thanked her colleagues around the world for their efforts in disease prevention, and said she hopes the messages shared by FIP will instil pride in pharmacists – as well as encouraging more to expand their immunisation services.

The first video shared is from Humberto Martins, director of professional affairs, National Association of Pharmacists, Portugal, who said that Portugal’s pharmacists have been able to offer flu vaccines for a decade.

“Since then, more than one third of the Portuguese annually get their flu shots on their pharmacy,” he said. “So pharmacists proved they are a valuable health care resource to help us all in this fight against preventable disease.

“Vaccines work, and pharmacists are a very valuable health care resource that can help to provide awareness and information about the vaccines.

“In places where pharmacists can also vaccinate people, there are even greater results in public health and for patients.”

 

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