COVID-19 vaccine at your local pharmacy? Manitobans hoping for accessible service

A vaccine is administered. Facebook

If you’re hoping to get the COVID-19 vaccine in future, you might be able to do it at your local pharmacy, if everything goes according to plan.

The vaccines being used now have to remain frozen before being used, but new vaccines that don’t require a freeze are expected to come into production in the months ahead — and the province is asking doctors and pharmacists to let them know if they would be interested in administering COVID-19 vaccines.

Winnipeg pharmacist Robyn Small of Tache Pharmacy told 680 CJOB it wouldn’t be a stretch for her pharmacy to administer the shots, as they’ve been giving several other shots routinely for several years now.

Read more: Coronavirus: Restaurants, gyms open under loosened health orders, UK variant in Manitoba

“That includes everything from flu vaccines to travel vaccines and anti-psychotic medications delivered by injection,” she said.

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“So we do a lot of things like that and are hoping to add the COVID vaccine to that shortly.”

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Small said she’s hoping the public will become more aware of the variety of services pharmacies offer — not just dispensing pills — if they’re able to distribute the COVID-19 vaccine.

Click to play video: 'Coronavirus: Manitoba confirms 1st case of U.K. variant'
Coronavirus: Manitoba confirms 1st case of U.K. variant

“I think the public maybe just isn’t aware of all the services, but I’m hoping that with the COVID vaccine coming out, I’m hoping we’re going to be able to change that,” she said.

“We’re a little bit more accessible — sometimes you will require an appointment, but a lot of the time you can just come in and speak to one of the pharmacists at any of your local pharmacies.

“I think there would certainly be an interest just based on availability and not having to go to a supersite. They’ve done a wonderful job with that but I think (pharmacies) are a little bit more accessible if we’re trying to roll out so many vaccines by 2021.”

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At a press conference Tuesday to discuss a further loosening of pandemic restrictions, Manitoba’s chief public health officer, Dr. Brent Roussin, said the province has recorded its first case of the United Kingdom variant of COVID-19.

Roussin said the case was linked directly to travel and that there isn’t any evidence of it spreading, but Manitobans should stay vigilant.

“We certainly can’t let our guard down,” he said.

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