Two community pharmacies in the northeaster Queensland town of Bowen, have delivered almost 2,500 Covid-19 vaccinations in a few short weeks.
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch’s Acting President, Chris Owen, has congratulated the extraordinary efforts of Bowen’s pharmacies by saying this Herculean task was impressive on its own, but even more so given the population of Bowen stands at just over 10,000 residents.
“LiveLife Pharmacy Bowen Healthcare and LiveLife Pharmacy Bowen Plaza deserve to be congratulated for their efforts,” says Mr Owen, “it’s hard to imagine anywhere else where two community pharmacies have delivered this large of a proportion of vaccines to their community.”
Mr Owen says the efforts in Bowen were not in isolation, with over 45,000 Covid-19 vaccinations being administered through the 700 Queensland community pharmacies in metropolitan, regional and remote areas.
A complete list of community pharmacies participating in the Covid-19 vaccine rollout can be found on findapharmacy.com.au/qldpharmacy.
“Community pharmacies across Queensland are now working around the clock to meet the demand. We’ve been amazed at the response from Queenslanders across the state wanting to come in and access Covid-19 vaccinations,” says Mr Owen.
“With 97% of consumers in capital cities and 66% in regional areas living within 2.5km of a pharmacy, it makes sense for pharmacy to be at the forefront of the rollout. Community pharmacies are also the most frequently visited primary healthcare destinations,” says Mr Owen.
“The message we’re sending Queenslanders when it comes to vaccines is clear,” says Mr Owen, “If you’re over 18, get the vaccine.”
“Regardless of your age, when you arrive at your community pharmacy, your pharmacist will undertake a health assessment and discuss the risks and benefits of the Covid-19 vaccine.
Both the patient and vaccinator need be satisfied that the benefits outweigh the risks before any vaccination takes place,” says Mr Owen.
“Anyone administering a Covid-19 vaccine in community pharmacies has undergone the Commonwealth’s mandatory training with the Australian College of Nurses on this specific vaccine.”
Mr Owen says community pharmacies continued to receive doses of AstraZeneca and would begin offering the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines later this year.