Vaccines to be rolled out from community pharmacies across NI

  • Community pharmacies across Northern Ireland's local high streets and neighbourhoods will join the Covid-19 vaccination programme from the end of this month.

    Hundreds of the pharmacies will provide vaccines to eligible members of the public, along with the work of GP practices and vaccination centres that are currently distributing the jabs.

    Over 300 pharmacies have signed up to be part of the scheme to date.

    The official launch of the roll-out to community pharmacies will be on 30 March, although it is expected that many will have started before then.

    The new mass vaccination centre at the SSE Arena is also due to open on 29 March.

    Health Minister Robin Swann, who announced the news said: “I am delighted to confirm yet another positive development in our drive to protect the people of Northern Ireland from Covid-19.

    “Community pharmacists are an integral part of the health and social care family. Their contribution to getting as many people vaccinated as possible will be invaluable.”

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    Northern Ireland’s Chief Pharmaceutical Officer Cathy Harrison added that “community pharmacies are the most accessible healthcare service for the public and their involvement in the Covid-19 vaccination programme will build on the success of their role in Northern Ireland’s 2020/21 winter flu vaccination."

    The Chief Executive of Community Pharmacy NI, Gerard Greene said he wanted to "also remind the public that community pharmacies remain open with support and guidance for any medical concern."

    "The vaccination programme will not impact on other services and prescriptions will be dispensed in a safe, convenient and timely manner," he continued.

    "Public health continues to be our top priority and the community pharmacy network remains committed to serving their communities. The Covid-19 vaccine is another example of community pharmacy playing that central role in primary healthcare.”

    The pace of the roll-out of the vaccination programme will be dependent on the availability of vaccine supplies, said the Department of Health.

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    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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