Queensland community pharmacies ready to deploy future COVID-19 vaccine

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia has today announced that community pharmacies in Queensland are ready to support the Queensland Government in rapidly deploying the COVID-19 vaccine, when it’s available.

While community pharmacies are experienced in administering vaccines to the community, Queensland Branch President, Professor Trent Twomey is calling for ongoing collaboration and coordination between healthcare professionals and the Queensland Government to ensure fast and equitable access to future vaccines and treatments.

Professor Twomey adds that while scientists worldwide work to rapidly develop a vaccine, healthcare professionals, including pharmacies need to prepare and plan for when a vaccine becomes available.

“Rapidly deploying a COVID-19 vaccination in future will require all primary healthcare professionals to join forces and work together to protect vulnerable community members during a time when they are most at risk.

“Queensland’s Chief Health Officer, Dr Jeannette Young, has previously expressed how important it will be for the COVID-19 vaccine to be available to everyone and distributed as quickly as possible, including through local community pharmacies.

“She has acknowledged that community pharmacists are ready and mobilised to vaccinate.

“The Pharmacy Guild of Australia asks the Queensland Government to use the strengths of community pharmacists to rapidly and safely deploy vaccines.

“After the largest flu vaccination season ever, community pharmacists stand ready and waiting to continue administering vital vaccines.”

Professor Twomey adds that pharmacists would like to see a future COVID-19 vaccine “subsidised equally for all primary healthcare professionals through the National Immunisation Program” as this would allow patients the “opportunity to choose the most convenient healthcare option for them at any given time”.

According to Professor Twomey, Queenslanders have taken the flu vaccination seriously this year, with a large proportion of the community already having their shots, and this as typically occurred at their local community pharmacy.

Professor Twomey believes, therefore, that because patients continue to access vaccines at their local community pharmacy, “utilising community pharmacies for administering the time-critical COVID-19 vaccination will ensure rapid deployment and accessibility for many Queenslanders”.

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