Announcing the milestone yesterday (June 3), Nadhim Zahawi thanked pharmacy staff and volunteers for their “fantastic effort” as part of the 66 million jabs already given, “including my own vaccination at [an] Avicenna pharmacy in Lewisham”, south-east London.
BREAKING NEWS: over 500 community pharmacies have delivered over 5 million vaccines in England - including my own vaccination at Avicenna pharmacy in Lewisham.— Nadhim Zahawi (@nadhimzahawi) June 3, 2021
Thank you to the staff and volunteers at #communitypharmacy local vaccination sites for their fantastic efforts.
When Mr Zahawi received his first dose at the end of March, pharmacist Salim Jetha told C+D the appointment “endorses pharmacy as a frontline profession”.
Meanwhile, pharmacy minister Jo Churchill described the milestone as “tremendous news on top of pharmacies delivering record flu jabs earlier in the year, demonstrating how trusted our pharmacy teams are by their communities to help look after their health”.
Similarly, Dr Nikki Kanani, medical director for primary care at NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSE&I) and Ed Waller, director for primary care for NHSE&I, gave “particular thanks” to the 500 community pharmacy vaccine sites.
As of May 28, there are 524 pharmacy-led vaccination sites in England.
Mr Zahawi’s announcement was received warmly by the pharmacy sector. Leyla Hannbeck, chief executive of the Association of Independent Multiple pharmacies, tweeted: “This showcases the dedication and hard work by pharmacy teams, not just during [the] pandemic, but consistently.
“This is just one of many reasons why the government should believe in community pharmacy and support it,” Dr Hannbeck added.
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society described the milestone as the result of a “massive effort” from community pharmacy, while the North of Tyne local pharmaceutical committee paid particular thanks to local pharmacies “which have stepped up to the mark to support the delivery of COVID vaccinations”.