APhA, Washington State University Launch Partnered Education Program For Administering Childhood Vaccinations


The program is designed to prepare state-licensed pharmacists to meet requirements for administering vaccinations to pediatric patients.

Pediatric vaccine

Two pharmacy organizations are partnering to offer a new education program to prepare state-state-licensed immunizing pharmacists to meet the requirements to administer vaccinations to children, in compliance with new guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).1

The American Pharmacists Association (APhA), in partnership with Washington State University College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, launched Pharmacy-based Immunizations for Pediatric Patients.2

The program provides a thorough review of topics related to immunizing pediatric patients, including parent and patient preparation, immunization administration techniques for children, and documentation of pediatric vaccinations, APhA said in a news release.3

“When the new HHS guidelines were announced, we moved quickly to put this program in place for our members. Including pharmacists as immunizers is critical to preventing the spread of flu this season and ensuring that all patients have convenient access to the COVID-19 vaccine when one is available,” said APhA Executive Vice President and CEO Scott J. Knoer, MS, PharmD, FASHP.

Upon completion of the program, pharmacists will be able to:2

  • List common pediatric vaccinations
  • Review CDC’s pediatric vaccination schedule and understand its importance
  • Identify parental resistance and propose effective strategies to overcome hesitation to the vaccine
  • Demonstrate correct injection techniques, such as those related to comforting, injection site, needle size, and length
  • Discuss effective strategies for managing adverse events (AEs)
  • Review best practices for documenting vaccine administration
  • Identify the most up-to-date and reliable immunization resources for pediatric immunizations

More than 375,000 pharmacists have completed APhA’s Pharmacy-Based Immunization Delivery Certificate Training Program, which meets the practical training required by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE), APhA said.

The new program meets the minimum of 2 hours of ACPE-approved, immunization-related continuing pharmacy education during each state licensing period.

With this new HHS guidance, pharmacists can further demonstrate their ability to provide important health care services like immunizations, which improve public health outcomes. “We created this program, along with many other COVID-19 related resources from APhA, to give pharmacists the tools they need to succeed,” Knoer said.


  1. Third Amendment to Declaration Under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act for Medical Countermeasures Against COVID–19. HHS; August 19, 2020. Accessed August 19, 2020. https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/third-amendment-declaration.pdf
  2. Pharmacy-based Immunizations for Pediatric Patients. APhA; October 1, 2020. Accessed October 27, 2020. https://www.pharmacist.com/pharmacy-based-immunizations-pediatric-patients
  3. APhA and Washington State University prepare pharmacists for pediatric immunizations. News release. APhA; October 1, 2020. Accessed October 27, 2020. https://www.pharmacist.com/press-release/apha-and-washington-state-university-prepare-pharmacists-pediatric-immunizations.

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