From September, vaccination in pharmacies for influenza, COVID-19 and pneumococcus?

  • Most likely, the parliamentary majority will receive a draft amendment to the law on the profession of pharmacist, which extends the legal protection due to a public official provided by the criminal code to pharmacists and pharmacy technicians
  • During the debate in the Sejm, the role of pharmacists during the COVID-19 pandemic was highlighted, including the fact that they carry out vaccinations
  • The Ministry of Health plans to expand the scope of vaccination in adult pharmacies by September

Ministry of Health responsible for the protection of pharmacists and technicians

On 11 May 2022, MPs heard the Health Committee’s report on the MP’s Bill amending the Pharmacy Profession Act.

The amendment extends the legal protection due to a public official provided for in the Penal Code also to pharmacists and pharmaceutical technicians who provide pharmaceutical services, pharmaceutical care or carry out the so-called “Professional activities” of a pharmacist.

Almost all clubs, with the exception of the Confederation, were in favor of this solution.

– A technician and a pharmacist benefit from the protection provided for a public official under the conditions provided for by law – Penal Code, in connection with the exercise of activities in a pharmacy or a pharmacy sales outlet related to the dispensing of medicines, to conduct a pharmaceutical interview, advice or – in the case of a pharmaceutical technician – other activities related to medicines, but related to direct contact with the patient – explained the Deputy Minister of Health , Maciej Milkowski.

– We know that the doctor during the interview, during the physical examination of the patient, is “one-on-one” with the patient, this relationship, this intimacy is very important, knowledge is transmitted. In the case of pharmacists, this “one-to-one” relationship also begins in a separate room, within the framework of pharmaceutical care, where the pharmacist will conduct a pharmaceutical interview, collect information from the patient about the drugs, the drugs over-the-counter, supplements that he takes, in order to advise on medications taken, he added.

He pointed out that the law would apply to all eligible persons, i.e. pharmaceutical technicians or pharmacists working in pharmacies or pharmaceutical outlets: – There are almost 15,000 of these places in the total: 13,000 pharmacies and 1,800 pharmacy points. These are people who are likely to commit prohibited acts.

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Vaccinations in pharmacies from September?

The Deputy Minister also raised questions regarding vaccinations carried out in pharmacies. He recalled that more than 3,100 pharmacists were involved in the vaccination against COVID-19 in a total of 1,569 pharmacies, and in the recent period, in May, 17% of vaccinations against COVID-19 were carried out by pharmacists in pharmacy.

– The ministry supports vaccinations against COVID-19 and influenza. Vaccinations against COVID-19 are still in effect. For flu vaccinations, the vaccination period is over because it lasts from September to April. Now we have such a free period, very often there is no availability of vaccines during this period, but we have the availability of reimbursement throughout the year – said Maciej Miłkowski.

He added that from September 1, pharmacists will still be able to vaccinate for both COVID-19 and influenza.

– We support flu vaccinations. We plan to extend this coverage to all adult-related vaccinations by September. The community expects that elderly people with pneumococcal can also be vaccinated, and that is what we anticipate. Thus, a pharmacist, as before, would have the right to qualify as well as perform vaccinations and continue to fill orders, prescriptions issued by doctors or registered nurses, for flu vaccinations – said the deputy minister.

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