No national Scottish pharmacy flu service a missed opportunity

 

In response to the following article:

 

MSPs raise concerns about Scottish flu vaccination programme

 

Dear PIP editor,

 

I note the article about MSPs being concerned about the Scottish flu vaccination programme.

 

Patients are just as concerned.

 

There is a huge demand in community pharmacy and a lot of this demand is from patients who are eligible for NHS flu vaccines but are not prepared to wait until programmes commence or are so concerned by the arrangements they would just prefer to pay instead.

 

In some Health Boards in Scotland pharmacists can provide NHS flu vaccines yet in others, the cohorts are extremely limited and in some, there is no provision at all.

 

Community pharmacy in Scotland never closed its doors and stands ready to support our partners in the NHS and beyond. The ease of access and availability of pharmacists at the heart of the community make community pharmacy a willing partner to help meet the unparalleled demand for flu vaccinations this year.

 

I have been very proud of how our teams in community pharmacy but also in the wider NHS have handled the, at times, crazy demand for our services. The multidisciplinary team has really pulled together and community pharmacy has played a tremendous part.

 

That said, as it stands, a lack of a national community pharmacy flu vaccination service allowing vaccinations through pharmacy will likely prove to be a real missed opportunity.

 

Yours etc.

 

Anon.

 

This Scottish pharmacy contractor asked to remain anonymous.

 

 

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