Derbyshire pharmacies 'ready and willing' to give Covid vaccinations
Pharmacists in Derbyshire say they are ‘ready and willing’ to help vaccinate the population in the ongoing battle against Covid-19.
NHS chiefs have been urged to get pharmacies, which are used to vaccinating thousands of people against flu each year, a role in the mass coronavirus vaccination programme and help lift England out of lockdown as soon as possible.
Hospitals and GP practices are already administering the vaccines but only larger pharmacies have so far been approved by NHS England to do so – something pharmacists in Derbyshire say must change.
Andrea Smith, the Chair of Community Pharmacy Derbyshire: “Community Pharmacy Derbyshire is delighted that both the Pfizer and the Astra-Zeneca vaccines are now starting to flow through the system and that more vaccination sites are continuing to open across Derbyshire.
"We know the challenging ambition of the government and the NHS is to vaccinate the 1.5 million people in the four priority groups by mid-February and confirm that many of our community pharmacists are ready, willing and able to support this.
"Community pharmacists in Derbyshire are experienced vaccinators who have provided over 40,000 flu vaccinations this season.
"Community pharmacies are situated in the hearts of communities across Derbyshire and are trusted and convenient locations for local people".
Figures show there are over 100 small and medium-sized pharmacies across the county that could be utilised to speed up the coronavirus vaccination rollout.
But not every pharmacy can be equipped to administer coronavirus jabs- in the age of social distancing, very small premises that have low limits on the number of customers that can enter at one time may struggle.
An NHS spokesperson said: “Pharmacies are already working with GPs to deliver the vaccine in many areas of the country.
“As more supply becomes available, community pharmacists able to administer large numbers of vaccine will play a role in the NHS’s phased vaccination programme, the biggest in the health service’s history.”
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