NSW pharmacists prepare to start vaccinating, while the Premier warns people to stop turning up to pharmacies with symptoms
Pharmacies across Sydney are under pressure but they are “working tirelessly” to cope with the latest COVID-19 outbreak, according to the Pharmacy Guild.
NSW currently has 840 active local cases to 8pm Wednesday, with most of the new cases concentrated in the western Sydney region.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced on Monday that all community pharmacies across the state will be mobilised to administer the vaccine to people aged 40 and over.
Capital Chemist Braidwood is the first NSW pharmacy to start taking bookings to administer the COVID-19 AstraZeneca vaccine from today (Thursday). It is one of the original 22 rural and regional pharmacies that were given approval to start vaccinating in the state.
Several pharmacies in western and inner west Sydney have been contacted by the Pharmacy Programs Administrator and are expected to receive their vaccines by Monday 26 July, a Guild source told AJP.
This will ramp up to between 100-450 Sydney pharmacies receiving stock within the next couple of weeks, they said.
Adore Compounding Pharmacy in Rozelle, in Sydney’s inner west, is one of the pharmacies that has already been contacted.
Proprietor Adele Tahan told AJP she is all set up and “ready to go”.
Her system is integrated with the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR), and she’s set up Guild Care and her website so patients aged 40 and above can book to receive the AstraZeneca vaccine at her pharmacy.
“There was a short survey I had to fill in, and had to get my integration number.
“I set it up, I’ve got everything ready to go, I just need to have the vaccine and all the consumables,” said Ms Tahan.
“We are in an outbreak situation right now, so if I receive the vaccine by the 26 July, I’ll be offering the vaccination immediately.
“It’s just been a long time coming. I know the all governments are doing their best. Community pharmacies are ready to go and be part of the pandemic efforts, to make sure we get rid of the pandemic as quickly as possible and be part of future immunisation programs – but we need their support.”
Meanwhile Ms Berejiklian has implored symptomatic people to get tested instead of turning up the pharmacies.
“Regrettably, a number of people who were infectious in the community were because they went to pharmacies while they had symptoms to get medical attention,” the premier said.
“If you are worried, call a health clinic or GP or somebody on the phone.
“Do not present yourself to a pharmacist or a medical centre or a GP clinic if you have symptoms.”
Catherine Bronger, proprietor of Chemistworks Wetherill Park in Sydney’s western suburbs, said her pharmacy has been slammed by positive cases in recent weeks.
Her pharmacy is one of more than 30 in the city that have been recently visited by a COVID-19 case, some by multiple cases.
Ms Bronger’s pharmacy has had 10 positive cases come through in the past two weeks.
“All the staff are safe thank goodness, no one’s testing positive at all but it makes running a business really difficult,” she told AJP on Monday.
“We’re a 24/7 pharmacy right in the middle of the hotspot. With contact tracing, it’s four days before [NSW Health] get in touch with us at all.”
Ms Bronger said thankfully they were casual contacts – meaning they were in the pharmacy for less than 15 mins – but concerningly they came in for cold and flu preparations.
“That goes to the government’s concern that people are really not understanding the importance of making sure they get tested beforehand. Patients are really just not understanding that,” she said.
Ms Bronger has also been notified that her pharmacy is a COVID-19 vaccination site. She is planning to set up her pharmacy to start vaccinating from 26 July.
The following pharmacies are on the NSW Health watch list:
Close contact sites: Anyone who attended these premises is a close contact and must immediately get tested and isolate for 14 days, regardless of the result.
- Terry White Chemmart, Shop 16/19-29 Marco Avenue, Revesby, Tuesday 6 July 8am – 3pm
- St Andrews Pharmacy, Shop 4-5/91 Ballantrae Drive, St Andrews, Wednesday 7 July 8.30am – 3.30pm
- Fairfield Heights Pharmacy, 275 The Boulevarde, Fairfield Heights, Tuesday 6 July 11.45am – 12.30pm
- Chemist Warehouse, 18/1 Broadway, Punchbowl, Thursday 8 July 9.20am – 9.40am; Thursday 8 July 2.30pm – 3pm
- Priceline, The Valley Plaza 2, 189 Wilson Road, Green Valley, Friday 9 July 2.30pm – 3.15pm
- Penna’s Green Valley Pharmacy, 174 Green Valley Road, Green Valley, Saturday 10 July 1.05pm – 1.15pm; Sunday 11 July 3.15pm – 3.25pm
Casual contact sites: Anyone who attended the following venues at the times listed is a casual contact who must immediately get tested and isolate until a negative result is received.
- Chemistworks Wetherill Park, 561-583 Polding St, Wetherill Park, Sunday 4 July 5.30pm – 6.30pm; Monday 5 July 11.30am – 12.15pm; Saturday 10 July 2:45pm to 3:45pm
- Chemist Warehouse, 821-825 Pennant Hills Rd, Carlingford, Monday 5 July 12.45pm – 1.15pm
- The Valley Pharmacy, 4 Benaud Pl Telopea, Tuesday 6 July 3pm – 3.30pm
- Priceline Pharmacy, World Square, Sydney Ground level, 9/644 George Street, Thursday 8 July 5.30pm – 6pm
- Fairfield Forum Pharmacy, 8/9 Station Street, Fairfield, Thursday 8 July 12.50pm – 5pm; Friday 9 July 1.45pm – 2.05pm
- Chemist Warehouse Maroubra, 229-231 Maroubra Road, Maroubra, Monday 5 July 9.55am – 10.30am
- Your Discount Chemist, Shop 1/19 Boronia Rd Greenacre, Monday 5 July 2pm – 2.15pm; Tuesday 6 July 1.55pm – 2.05pm
- Chemist Warehouse Westfield Hurstville, 216B/218A Westfield Drive, Hurstville, Tuesday 6 July 2.25pm – 3.15pm
- Georges Hall Pharmacy, 1/195 Birdwood Rd Georges Hall, Monday 5 July 2pm – 2.30pm
- Boulevarde Pharmacy, 170 The Boulevarde, Fairfield Heights, Saturday 10 July 9am – 10am; Tuesday 13 July 10am – 11am
- Pharmacy 4 Less, Bankstown Central, 1 North Terrace, Bankstown, Friday 9 July 9am – 9.15am
- Health Save Pharmacy, 183A Ramsgate Road, Ramsgate, Wednesday 7 July 5pm – 5.40pm
- Chemist Warehouse, 8 Kenyon Street, Fairfield, Wednesday 7 July 2.45pm – 3.40pm; Monday 5 July 1.45pm – 2pm; Monday 5 July 12pm – 2pm
- Chemist Warehouse, 135 Oxford Street, Bondi Junction, Monday 5 July 12.45pm – 1.15pm
- Priceline Wetherill Park, Stockland Wetherill Park, Polding Street, Wetherill Park, Saturday 10 July 1pm – 2pm
- Elias Pharmacy, 37-41 Ware Street, Fairfield, Thursday 8 July 3.30pm – 3.35pm
- O’Loughlin’s Medical Pharmacy, St Ives Shopping Village, 166 Mona Vale Road, St Ives, Friday 9 July 6:00pm to 6:30pm
- Priceline Pharmacy, Stockland Mall, Shop, 1090 McFarlane Street, Merrylands, Monday 12 July 1pm – 2pm
- Terry White Chemmart, Shop 16/19-29 Marco Avenue, Revesby, Wednesday 14 July 10.05am – 10.10am
- Fairfield Heights Pharmacy, 275 The Boulevarde, Fairfield Heights, Monday 12 July 4.30pm – 6pm
- The Discount Drug Store, 50 Simmat Avenue, Condell Park, Monday 12 July 11.25am – 11.35am
- Chemist Warehouse Parramatta, 202 Church St Parramatta, Wednesday 14 July 3.30pm – 4.30pm Thursday 15 July 10.30am – 11am
Monitor for symptoms: Anyone who attended the following venue at the times listed must monitor for symptoms and if they occur get tested immediately and self-isolate until you receive a negative result.
- Southgate Pharmacy, Southgate Shopping Centre, Princes Highway and Port Hacking Road, Sylvania, Tuesday 6 July 11:05am to 11:20am
- Chemist Warehouse, Crossroads Homemaker Centre, 15/5 Parkers Farm Place, Casula, Friday 9 July 1:20pm to 1:30pm
- Priceline Pharmacy, 764 Old Princess Highway, Sutherland, Monday 12 July 3:40pm to 4:00pm
- Chemist Warehouse, 135 Oxford Street, Bondi Junction, Saturday 10 July 9.15am – 9.25am
- Galluzzo’s Chemist, Shop 11, 14/247 Belmore Road, Riverwood, Monday 12 July 10.50am – 11am
- Cincotta Chemist Engadine, 1097 Old Princes Highway, Engadine, Monday 12 July 12.25pm – 12.40pm