Community Pharmacy and COVID-19 Vaccinations Update

Yesterday afternoon the Government published its UK COVID-19 vaccines delivery plan, which includes the following statement on community pharmacy involvement:

“Community pharmacy sites will start to deliver vaccines from mid-January, offering bookings through the National Booking Service. This will help improve access through primary care to as many of the population as possible. The early community pharmacy sites will be able to offer significant numbers of appointments. Community pharmacies are integral parts of local communities and will be accessible and approachable places from which to deliver vaccination.”

PSNC look forward to working with DHSC and NHSE&I on the detail behind the Government’s plan and further information will be made available as soon as possible.

Over the weekend PSNC Chief Executive Simon Dukes commented:

“Last week saw renewed interest in the role that community pharmacies can play in the COVID-19 vaccination programme following PSNC’s national media push, and we were pleased to hear Ministers as well as Boris Johnson confirming that there will be a role for the sector to play.

While it is positive that some pharmacies have already been selected by NHSE&I as local vaccination sites, we want to see the sector playing a far bigger role than this. The pharmacy organisations are already working up proposals for this.

PSNC’s ambition is for many thousands of pharmacies to be used to deliver the AstraZeneca vaccine, which is logistically more suited to community settings. We know that patients will value this; that community pharmacies can do this; and that this would make a significant contribution to the national vaccination efforts. We hope to be able to share plans for this with contractors very soon so that they can make the necessary preparations and be ready to get going as soon as there is enough vaccine supply to enable smaller community vaccination sites like pharmacies to be stood up.”