Is pharmacy ready for the COVID vaccine?

The federal government wants the COVID-19 vaccination rollout to being in February, but our readers are not sure if pharmacy is ready 

Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt has said this week that the government is still committed to the COVID-19 vaccination rollout kicking off by the end of the month.

And community pharmacies are now able to express interest in participating in Phase 2A of the COVID-19 Vaccination Program.

However, only as third of voters to an AJP poll said they felt the profession was ready to start the program. A similar amount wanted more information before committing.  

We asked our readers “Is pharmacy ready to vaccinate as part of phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccine rollout?”

Here’s what you voted (current as of 9/2):

  • Yes: 35% (285 votes)
  • No: 26% (218) 
  • Not sure: 7% (57)
  • We need more detail: 32% (264)

“Community pharmacy will be an important partner in the rollout of COVID-19 vaccines,” Mr Hunt said in a joint statement with Pharmacy Guild national president George Tambassis.

“Utilising the existing network of thousands of community pharmacies will ensure the general population have broader access to COVID-19 vaccinations, provide choice in where the community receive a vaccine, and address barriers to access some parts of rural and regional Australia.

“Participation in the program will be voluntary and pharmacies will need to demonstrate they meet the highest safety standards and have capacity and capability to deliver COVID-19 vaccines, as well as ensuring they continue to provide important services to their local communities”.

Mr Tambassis said that appropriately trained pharmacists are “ideally placed” to play their part in vaccinating the community against the novel coronavirus.

“Some 94% of pharmacies are members of the pharmacy profession’s quality assurance program, QCPP, and the robustness of this program underpins the sector’s ability to meet the challenges of the pandemic and the delivery of COVID-19 vaccinations, while maintaining the levels of service and medicine delivery critical to their role as frontline healthcare professionals.” 

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