WASHINGTON, D.C. — The leaders of 18 pharmacy organizations today issued the following statement following the Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the first Emergency Use Authorization for the COVID-19 vaccine.
“We heartily welcome the decision by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to authorize the emergency use of the first COVID-19 vaccine, following the recommendation of the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC).
“This is a historic moment in the nation’s effort to end the pandemic. The pharmacy profession is ready to do its part as qualified, active participants in administering these vaccines in accordance with guidance issued by the FDA, CDC, HHS and state and local health departments, as well as increasing access for the American public to these important disease prevention tools.
“We are confident that FDA has taken extraordinary care to ensure that the vaccine is safe and effective. The American people should have great confidence in the vaccine. The vast majority of pharmacists have indicated in recent surveys that they intend to be vaccinated themselves and plan to recommend the vaccine to their patients. More than 360,000 pharmacists, student pharmacists and pharmacy technicians nationwide are trained to administer vaccines.
“Pharmacists are the most accessible health care providers in the nation, with 90% of Americans living within 5 miles of pharmacy. Across the nation they stand ready, in all patient care settings, to administer the vaccine and counsel patients through this critical moment in our nation’s history. As trusted health professionals dedicated to serving the health care needs of our communities, we stand ready to serve.”
Academy of Managed Care Pharmacy
Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education
American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy
American College of Apothecaries
American College of Clinical Pharmacy
American Pharmacists Association
American Society of Consultant Pharmacists
American Society of Health-System Pharmacists
College of Psychiatric and Neurologic Pharmacists
Hematology/Oncology Pharmacy Association
National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations
National Association of Boards of Pharmacy
National Association of Chain Drug Stores
National Association of Specialty Pharmacy
National Community Pharmacists Association
National Pharmaceutical Association
Society of Infectious Diseases Pharmacists
Pharmacy Quality Alliance
The COVID-19 Prevention Network (CoVPN) was formed by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) to respond to the global pandemic. Using the infectious disease expertise of their existing research networks and global partners, NIAID has directed the networks to address the pressing need for vaccines and monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) against SARS-CoV-2.
The network is seeking the assistance of pharmacists and pharmacy personnel to inform the public of the opportunity to participate in the clinical trials. More information and the link to volunteer can be found at the COVID-19 Prevent Network website.
There are materials available to pharmacists that can be used to share with patients, communities, family and friends. A special referral code (RXRX) has been created for individuals to include when signing up that identifies pharmacy as the source of referral and demonstrate pharmacy’s impact.
The development and release of effective vaccines against COVID-19 is dependent upon recruiting sufficient numbers of individuals to participate in the vaccine clinical trials, especially individuals within these targeted demographics:
People with underlying medical conditions
People with greater chances of exposure at their job
People who live or work in elder-care facilities
People over age 65
People who work in jails or prisons
People from racial and ethnic groups that have been impacted in greater numbers by the epidemic, such as African Americans, Latinx, and Native Americans
Individuals interested in volunteering complete a short online survey that includes some personal questions and entry into a registry. The purpose of the screening registry is to create a list of potential volunteers who want to take part in current or future COVID-19 prevention clinical trials. Individuals must be 18 years or older to participate. Participation is voluntary.
COVID-19 prevention study participants will be compensated for their time. COVID-19 prevention study participants CANNOT get infected with SARS-CoV-2 or get COVID-19 illness from the study vaccine.