Frieda Wiley, PharmD, BCGP, is a writer and pharmacist.
Store owners offer tips for supplying and giving shots.
Stories about independent pharmacies not offering COVID-19 vaccines have flooded the local media in places like Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Colorado, but a different story is being told on the East and West coasts.
“Independent pharmacies and pharmacy owners can get the vaccine faster because it’s easier for them to communicate with county and city officials,” said Miguel Oseguera, CPhT, owner of Familia Farmacia in Modesto, California. “In fact, we get a lot of customers from chain pharmacies because they can’t get the vaccine there.”
Less than 2 weeks after having met with local government officials, Oseguera received his first batch of the COVID-19 vaccine. He believes the personal interaction helped increase his chances of getting the supply in his store.
Hossein Ejtemai, RPh, who owns Brookville Pharmacy and Wellness Center in Chevy Chase, Maryland, is still waiting for his first shipment, but he is ready to begin administering the vaccine as soon as it arrives. “I can vaccinate up to 500 patients a day if I get a vaccine,” he said.
Ejtemai has a plan that will allow him to immunize patients quickly and efficiently. His current strategy is to vaccinate 25 to 50 patients at the same time. His pharmacy has 2 rooms that can be used for the mass immunizations, where patients will be able to maintain a safe social distance. Each room will hold scheduled immunizations at least an hour apart.