U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Expanding COVID-19 Vaccine Care to Community Pharmacist
Recently, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released a statement regarding actions to expand access of the COVID-19 vaccine once it is available for distribution. This will allow pharmacists and pharmacy interns (under supervision of a pharmacist) to administer the vaccine to patients ages 3 and up!
The following requirements must be complied by pharmacists and interns before administration:
The vaccine must be FDA-authorized or FDA-licensed.
The vaccination must be ordered and administered according to the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices' (ACIP) COVID-19 vaccine recommendation.
The licensed pharmacist must complete a practical training program of at least 20 hours that is approved by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education (ACPE). This training program must include hands-on injection technique, clinical evaluation of indications and contraindications of vaccines, and the recognition and treatment of emergency reactions to vaccines.
The licensed or registered pharmacy intern must complete a practical training program that is approved by the ACPE.
The licensed pharmacist and licensed or registered pharmacy intern must have a current certificate in basic CPR.
The licensed pharmacist must complete a minimum of two hours of ACPE-approved, immunization-related continuing pharmacy education during each state licensing period.
The licensed pharmacist must comply with recordkeeping and reporting requirements of the jurisdiction in which he or she administers vaccines, including reviewing the vaccine registry or other vaccination records prior to administering a vaccine.
The licensed pharmacist must, if the patient is 18 years of age or younger, inform the patient and the adult caregiver accompanying the patient of the importance of a well-child visit with a pediatrician or other licensed primary-care provider and refer patients as appropriate.
The licensed pharmacist and the licensed or registered pharmacy intern must comply with any applicable requirements (or conditions of use) as set forth in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 vaccination provider agreement and any other federal requirements that apply to the administration of COVID-19 vaccine(s).
For more information about the COVID-19 vaccine and what to except when it is distributed, please see the following resources: