Community pharmacists should receive swine flu jab

Community pharmacists should be included in the priority groups for swine flu vaccination, according to DoH national director for flu resilience Ian Dalton.

A letter has been sent to all PCT chief executives and SHA flu leads to advise them that pharmacists and their clinical staff, who have regular clinical contact with patients, will be eligible for the priority H1N1 vaccination programme.

The letter, signed by Ian Dalton, comes after initial DoH guidance failed to include pharmacists in the group of healthcare professionals eligible for the jab.

Sue Sharpe, chief executive of the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC) said: ‘Community pharmacists have been understandably unhappy about their apparent exclusion from the list of frontline healthcare workers eligible for the priority H1N1 vaccination programme. 

'DoH has assured me that there was no intention to exclude pharmacy staff who work directly with patients on the frontline from receiving the H1N1 vaccination as a priority, and I am pleased that this has now been clarified.'


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