National Pharmacy Association welcomes second wave of pharmacist-led covid vaccination sites

21 Jan 2021

Sixty-five more covid-19 vaccination sites are going live over the coming days, in pharmacies and other pharmacist-led sites across England. 

The National Pharmacy Association (NPA) today welcomed the expansion of the vaccine programme, and again claimed that thousands of pharmacies could eventually be involved, to accelerate the roll out.

The first six pharmacy sites went live on 14 January, including four independent pharmacies.  Many of this second tranche of sites are also run by independent pharmacists, although some national chains are also bringing sites on stream.

Andrew Lane, chair of the National Pharmacy Association, said:

“This represents a significant expansion of covid vaccination sites, but pharmacies can ultimately go a lot further to protect the population. England’s network of 11,500 community pharmacies is a formidable asset in our collective response to the covid-19 pandemic. They are collectively capable of protecting millions of people if given the chance. “I believe pharmacists are going to be sprinters and marathon runners in the race to vaccinate the whole adult population by the autumn and then keep people protected into the future.”

Olivier Picard, owner of Newdays Pharmacy, is opening a vaccine site in Marlow, Buckinghamshire.  He said:

“I’m doing this to help kick covid into touch. By offering more choice, in a convenient location, we’ll be making a big contribution locally.  As soon as bookings were enabled through the National Booking System, we quickly became fully subscribed so there’s no doubt that people trust pharmacists to protect them.  It’s a daunting prospect but perfectly do-able and we’re proud to be taking part in this vital programme.”

Olivier Picard is one of two members of the NPA board who are opening vaccination sites this week.  The other is Raj Patel, owner of Hollowood Chemists in the North West of England.

Raj Patel said:

“We have set up our three vaccination sites in a matter of weeks, which has only been possible with the active support of the local communities we serve, including local councils and business owners.  Everyone has stepped up to plate and it’s shown the power of coming together in the common good, as well as the responsiveness of community pharmacists.”