‘AstraZeneca isn’t enough’: Pharmacies plead with provinces for access to other COVID-19 vaccines

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Sumary of ‘AstraZeneca isn’t enough’: Pharmacies plead with provinces for access to other COVID-19 vaccines:

  • Canadian pharmacies are helping administer COVID-19 vaccines across the country, saying the demand for inoculation is massive..
  • For example, Ontario and British Columbia only supply their eligible pharmacies with AstraZeneca, which can only be used for patients 55 years old and up due to Health Canada regulations..
  • Ontario vaccine rule in pharmacies In Ontario, adults aged 55 years of age and older can make appointments either through a pharmacy or a primary caregiver to get a dose of the AstraZeneca vaccine..
  • Global News reached out several times to Ontario Health for a comment on why the province only allows AstraZeneca in its pharmacies but did not hear back at the time of publication..
  • Toronto pharmacist, Kyro Maseh said the demand for vaccines has been astronomical, and he hoping the province will soon allow pharmacies access to Pfizer and Moderna too..
  • He said during Ontario phase one vaccine rollout, the province gave each eligible pharmacy 500 doses of the AstraZeneca shot that was expiring April 2..
  • View link » “I had 500 doses when I started vaccinating, and I didn’t have the capacity and volunteers that I do now, yet I still managed to vaccinate over 500 doses in roughly 10 days,”.
  • Maseh feels the province isn’t allowing him and other pharmacies access to Pfizer or Moderna because officials are “worried about vaccines expiring”.
  • “Within a week if you gave me a thousand [vaccines] I could assemble a team and I could get out a thousand doses..
  • But he argued pharmacies are still able to handle the logistical challenges (such as short shelf life and cold chain requirements) and get the vaccines in people arms within a week..
  • 2:09 Some Ontario pharmacies gear up to administer coronavirus vaccines Some Ontario pharmacies gear up to administer coronavirus vaccines – Mar 10, 2021 Justin Bates, CEO of the Ontario Pharmacists Association (OPA) said he currently lobbying the government to provide them with access to more vaccine types in order to help meet demand..
  • “There are two other provinces that currently allow for a mix of vaccines into pharmacy, including Pfizer, and that Alberta and Nova Scotia,”.
  • But access to more vaccines means more pharmacies will be able to participate and help put a dent in the number of people vaccinated in the province..
  • “If we were onboarded with 3,200 pharmacies and we give about an average of 40 shots per day, it would be about a million per week,”.
  • How it works in Alberta Every pharmacy in Alberta has been offered the chance to participate in the province vaccine rollout, Alberta Health spokesperson Tom McMillan told Global News in an email..
  • “Initially, due to limited vaccine quantities and strict storage, handling and distribution requirements for the mRNAs vaccines, only a limited number of pharmacies were able to offer the vaccine,”.
  • We are currently administering Pfizer, Moderna and AstraZeneca vaccines through various pharmacies provincewide.”.
  • Some Albertans get COVID-19 vaccine ahead of schedule as pharmacies distribute leftover doses McMillan said community pharmacies have played such an important role in season flu programs, they have the skills, experience and infrastructure in place to be “an important part of our COVID-19 immunization programs.”.
  • For example, pharmacies with Pfizer vaccines are able to immunize people who are part of Phase 2B (people aged 16-64 with high-risk health conditions)..
  • But if you are in your mid-20s and don’t have a health risk condition, a pharmacist would not be able to vaccinate you..
  • 1:45 Calgary pharmacist disappointed in COVID-19 vaccine rollout, wants to help Calgary pharmacist disappointed in COVID-19 vaccine rollout, wants to help Alberta Health also said all pharmacies are given explicit guidance on booking and utilizing a waitlist to ensure doses aren’t wasted…

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