Orange Pharmacist Kate Gray Says Industry To Be Overwhelmed By COVID-19 Demands | Daily Central West

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PHARMACISTS and their staff are on the verge of being overwhelmed as they struggle to juggle the government’s Morrison government’s vaccine rollout for children with its adult recall campaign and continued demands for rapid antigen kits. This week, the government announced that three million vaccines were being distributed before the start of the school year to allow 2.3 million children, including the 5-11 age group, to receive their first vaccine. While local health centers will help, vaccines are largely administered by pharmacists and general practitioners. n on an industry already struggling with its own COVID-19 forced staffing issues coupled with the additional workload of the adult recall program – on top of the usual workload that comes with owning a busy community pharmacy. Ms Gray described the situation at her Summer Street business as an “absolute nightmare”. “The phones keep ringing with people wanting to know if we have RATs or if we have pediatric doses, it’s just continuous,” she said. “We are complete [for adult booster shots] and we run walk-in tours in addition to our bookings so we can make as many people as possible. “We have 100 doses, some pharmacies haven’t received any,” she said. “We’ll have another 100 by the end of next week, but the demand far exceeds the supply and all these harassed parents are coming in. Or calling me … it’s just a nightmare.” Ms Gray said this was a scenario playing out in almost every Orange drugstore. She added that the situation with rapid antigen testing also increased stress levels. “They [Federal Government] have sequestered all the stock, so the only RATS available go through the Wade Park or Showground test centers and the lines there are huge, last for hours, and you won’t get a quick antigen test that if you have symptoms, “And then ScoMo comes out and says we have this program where the concession and pension card holders can get 30 tests over a three month period, go to your pharmacy and they can provide it. . a local pharmacy in Australia that has them. “We have 2,000 out of stock and last Friday we had six.” Ms Gray said she felt the government had just ‘dumped’ the rollout of vaccination on pharmacists and general practitioners and she was also annoyed that pharmacists did not receive the same remuneration as general practitioners for administering vaccines, which prompted her to write to Federal Minister of Health, Greg Hunt. “There are a lot of pharmacists who just hit the wall and they ask themselves, should we keep doing this? A lot of my friends in Sydney have pulled the plug on pediatric vaccines, it’s just not worth it, ”she said. “We do this because we feel a social responsibility to be able to provide the service. It’s really important from my perspective as a community pharmacy, that’s what we’re here for. Calare Federal Member Andrew Gee said he visited Peter Smith TerryWhite Chemmart. “I saw first-hand the great work they do. providing vaccines and boosters to many Orange residents, which has helped protect communities across our country from the virus. I received a booster shot at a local pharmacy last week, ”he said. He also admitted to having received a copy of Ms Gray’s letter to Mr Hunt. “I have also raised the matter directly with Minister Hunt, and I have no doubt that he will respond soon,” added Mr. Gee. “A little over a week after the letter was sent, the federal government announced that an additional incentive of $ 10 per dose will be paid to pharmacists on top of existing funding. The additional funding, in place as of December 23, 2021, offers greater support and recognizes the role that GPs and pharmacies play in the deployment of the COVID-19 vaccine. Our journalists work hard to provide local and up-to-date information to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content: GIVE YOUR OPINION Send a letter to the editor using the form below


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