Donegal pharmacists and their teams want to help
A meeting was held today between representatives of Donegal pharmacists, pharmacy staff and Donegal Oireachtas members to coordinate and discuss the ability and willingness of pharmacists to engage in the vaccination programme in relation to Covid-19 in the county..
Rory O'Donnell, James Cassidy and Tom Murray (Pharmacy Contractors Committee IPU); Deputies Pearse Doherty, Padraig Mac Lochlainn, Thomas Pringle and Senator Eileen Flynn were in attendance, as was a representative of minister, Charlie McConalogue.
Deputy Joe McHugh was unable to attend but had previously engaged with the pharmacists' representatives during the week.
The meeting was on foot of a letter signed by 67 Donegal based pharmacists on behalf of themselves and their staff teams.
It proved a positive engagement and as mentioned, focused on the ability and willingness of pharmacists to engage in the vaccination programme in relation to Covid-19.
This is based on responding to the public health emergency and the vast experience of administering seasonal flu vaccines in a professional, patient lead convenient and above all safe environment to all age groups - particularly in the last 12 months during the challenging times caused by the pandemic.
The main points focused on were:
- The willingness of pharmacists to partake in vaccine rollout
- The need for the full pharmacy team to be vaccinated prior to roll out to enable a safe environment in which to provide vaccination services
- Timely roll out of vaccine to population through pharmacy network
- Support for future health initiatives in which pharmacists would take part
- Frustration at the lack of support for pharmacy services since the onset of the pandemic
The elected representatives present were all well briefed on the issues beforehand and an honest and enlightened discussion took place in relation to all issues surrounding roll out of vaccines in a rural county and to patients with challenging needs.
It is understood a further representation may be made by those present to the Minister for Health and his department.
It was agreed that further engagement between Donegal pharmacists and elected representatives would take place.
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