More Queensland Community Pharmacies join the fight in vaccinating against COVID-1
The Pharmacy Guild of Australia, Queensland Branch’s Acting President, Chris Owen said that an additional 82 community pharmacies would begin offering free COVID vaccinations to members of the community commencing in late July 2021. Up to a further 186 community pharmacies, that are already approved through the Federal Government’s EOI Process, will also join the State’s COVID vaccination rollout, beginning in August.
Mr. Owen said the additional pharmacies were in outer-metro, rural and regional areas of Queensland and will join the 49 community pharmacies already vaccinating against COVID-19.
“The inclusion of community pharmacies is vital for rural and remote communities who don’t have access to doctor surgeries or vaccination hubs,” Mr. Owen said.
“We’re delighted to see the rollout being extended to include more pharmacies, which is vital for regional and rural communities that don’t have access to doctor surgeries or vaccination hubs” said Mr. Owen.
“June saw Queensland leading the way with the initial announcement of 49 community Queensland pharmacies being the first pharmacies in Australia to begin offering the free COVID-19 vaccinations.”
“Although at the end of this month 131 community pharmacies will be offering this choice to Queenslanders, more needs to be done.”
“There’s no reason for the other 521 community pharmacies in Queensland that have already been assessed as suitable by the Commonwealth not to be included in the rollout immediately.”
“Given the need to vaccinate as many Queenslanders as quickly as possible, and the decentralised nature of our state, it is imperative that these community pharmacies are brought online, not only in rural and remote areas of the state but also within the urban centres.”
“I call on the Commonwealth to immediately activate the remaining 521 community pharmacies in metro areas,” said Mr. Owen, “We need protect Queenslanders and stop these revolving lockdowns.”
“If we activate those community pharmacies now, more Queenslanders will have access to COVID-19 vaccinations when more stock becomes available in September and October.”
“Community pharmacies are highly accessible with 97% of consumers in capital cities and 66% in regional areas living within 2.5km of a pharmacy.
Pharmacies are also the most frequently visited primary healthcare destinations, and staff are well placed for significant interactions with members of the public,” said 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.”
A full list of Queensland community pharmacies currently vaccinating against COVID-19 can be found at findapharmacy.com.au/qldpharmacy.