More and more independent pharmacies are now administering the COVID-19 shot, but this vaccination option isn’t permanent.
As the Connecticut Pharmacists Association will tell you, pharmacists are only able to administer this vaccine and inoculate folks younger than 18 right now because of an executive order by Gov. Ned Lamont.
The order has been extended through May 20, but local pharmacists we heard from hope to keep this capability as many independent locations have strong ties with the community.
“We’re ideally located to provide vaccines and other services to historically underserved community, socially vulnerable community that doesn’t’ have the best access to health care,” said David Flaherty, manager of the Arrow Pharmacy in Hartford.
Republicans have been fighting for the legislature to have more say in the governor’s executive orders.
Gov. Lamont’s office said it will be relaying which orders they believe are important and need to be extended, like this one.
“They know their pharmacist by first name. You walk in, they know them by name and the pharmacists know them. So if that’s a matter of getting people through the door to get vaccinated, that’s the reason why we felt it important that local pharmacists play a strong role in our vaccine roll out,” said Lamont’s chief of staff Paul Mounds Jr.
But in the meantime, there’s no bill on the table to allow pharmacists to keep vaccinating against COVID.
Roderick Marriott, the director of the drug control division for the Department of Consumer Protection, says now it’s time to work with the legislature on this.
“Just finding the sweet spot on that number where pharmacists are comfortable administering vaccines to pediatrics and people under 18, and where parents and patients are comfortable coming in,” he said.