Community pharmacies across Alberta are contributing to the fight against COVID-19 in many ways, perhaps most importantly by providing vaccination injections to more than one million Albertans. ACP recognizes the pharmacy teams that are providing safe, effective, and responsible vaccinations to Albertans.
The college encourages pharmacists to ensure they take the time to assess the appropriateness of the vaccination for their patients, gain informed consent from their patients, provide information to patients about the vaccine and what to expect during and after being vaccinated, and answer any questions patients might have.
This is a busy time for pharmacy teams, so it’s important to assure that appropriate staff levels are maintained during times when vaccinations are being provided and that an appropriate injection environment at the pharmacy is maintained.
As the vaccination program continues and more and more Albertans receive either their first or second dose, here are some important points to remember to assure that vaccinations are done in a safe and effective manner:
- Ensure proper hand hygiene (Refer to Standard 17.3 from ACP’s Standards of Practice for Pharmacists and Pharmacy Technicians and ACP’s Hand Hygiene guidelines for reference) and that the vaccine is administered in a clean, safe, and appropriately private setting.
- Schedule enough time for each vaccination so that patients don’t feel they are being rushed and are able to provide informed consent.
- Identify the type and name of the vaccine to your patient.
- Ensure proper injection site and landmarking.
- Always comply with public health measures such as pharmacy staff masking and ensure patients are able to maintain proper physical distancing, especially in smaller pharmacies and waiting areas.
- Ensure that the patient is appropriately monitored after the vaccine has been administered and that appropriate post-immunization information is provided to the patient.
- If you don’t have post-immunization information available, consider these resources from AHS: Care after immunization or MyHealth.Alberta.ca.
For more information refer to ACP’s guidance: Administering injections to patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.