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vaccine administration - why pharmacists over physicians?

Discussion in 'Pharmacy' started by pharmacology888, 10.31.07.

  1. pharmacology888

    pharmacology888

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    HI

    I just wanted to facilitate a discussion on why we should promote pharmacists to administer vaccinations over doctors. My thoughts are:
    -convenient location: pharmacies are more conveniently located than physician's offices
    -hours of operation: pharmacies are open on weekends and less restricted on business hours
    -cost: with no insurance, getting a vaccine at the pharmacy is cheaper than at the doctor's office
    -easier to make the appointment: doctor's are usually booked

    Any other thoughts would be greatly appreciated. thanks
  2. soyroger

    soyroger New Member

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    Out of your 4 answers I'd mainly go with cost from the personal perspective. Vaccine at doctor's office = vaccine cost + office visit vs. vaccine at the pharmacy = vaccine cost alone.

    From a public health point of view; people see their pharmacist more often than their doctor, therefore more people are likely to get vaccinated with this change in location.
  3. pharmacology888

    pharmacology888

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    Thanks for replying. I have a question regarding the cost. Personally, because I have insurance, all I had to pay was the copay to get my vaccines, however, is it like that with all insurance companies? I understand that if we are referring to the cost for a patient who doesn't have insurance, it would be greater at the doctor's office; but can we extend this notion to a patient who is covered?
  4. MountainPharmD

    MountainPharmD custodiunt illud simplex

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    First, your doctor does not give you a shot. A nurse in your doctor's office gives the shot. Secondly, access is why pharmacists are perfectly suited as immunizers. There is a pharmacy on every corner.
  5. CanPharm

    CanPharm

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    Totally agree! The only draw back is that pharmacists don't have much practice in giving the shots, so they may not do it as well as most nurses.
  6. OUTexan

    OUTexan

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    My site visit for the month is a privately owned pharmacy that does 250 scripts a day. They are located right across from a hospital. They have done 700 flu shots this month. Most of these shots were done by a 4th year pharmacy student doing her rotations there. They also do zostavax, garadisil and menigitis shots and others.
  7. alwaystired

    alwaystired

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    doctor's office sometimes has trouble getting the vaccine. and some of the offices do not want to hassel with it (cost, risk of expiration, procurement, increased business, insurance denials) At least, those are some of the things I can think of.
  8. JerryPharmD

    JerryPharmD Salt Miner

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    cost=approx $12

    price= approx $30

    answer=$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$ :D
  9. njac

    njac Senior Member

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    actually, we did a flu shot clinic with the nursing school here and the pharmacy students were commended on their shot-giving skills.

    I was so scared giving 20-year veteran nurses shots but they were very cool about it.
  10. Farmercyst

    Farmercyst Lowest common denominator Moderator Emeritus

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    Take it for what it's worth, but none of the 8 people I gave shots to (I'm up to 10 now:rolleyes:) had any clue I hadn't been doing it for years. No one complained. I'm guessing if you've given 10 you've given 1000. The technique doesn't change from 1 person to the next. Starting IV's, that's a whole different story. They can have it.
  11. pharmagirl

    pharmagirl

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    Very true! There are only so many ways you can give a vaccine. :laugh:
  12. pharmacology888

    pharmacology888

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    Thanks for the input!

    Then how should I approach the topic of promoting pharmacist to administer vaccines as oppose to physicians? My first thougt was to simply just compare the benefits of getting vaccinated at a pharmacy clinic versus at the doctor's office, however, people can counterargue that technically nurses can be hire to run these clinics at pharmacies, so pharmacists don't have to get involved (if it's simply for the cost, conveniece, and hours of operation limits that patients encounter at the doctor's office). This is actually a group project and some one else in my group is already talking about the benefits of administering vaccines in the community pharmacy setting, so I don't know how to expand on my part without overlapping with their content.

    thanks once again
  13. Jbuprepharm

    Jbuprepharm The Poopsmith

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    California lets first year students give shots/have patient contact?

    I ask because the Texas state board just passed some new regs that first year students cannot touch patients at all (which is kinda dumb) so now they're reduced to triage/paperwork. That's cool though, I wish we could have gotten started with shots last year
  14. Farmercyst

    Farmercyst Lowest common denominator Moderator Emeritus

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    Don't think of it as competition, think of it as augmentation. Based on stats they gave us, in studies done by APhA when they were initially considering Pharmacist immunizations, the overall immunization rate increased in areas where pharmacists were giving immunizations. Sure there would be a slight overall shift, but primarily pharmacists were creating new "customers" if you will. In terms of pharmacist vs nurse, if you shift more of the technical roles (filling, labeling, rx entry) to techs, then you reduce costs over nurses (per se) since techs cost less than nurses, and the pharmacist is there anyway. If the pharmacist were to do nothing but checks, and counsels instead of technician duties, it's possible that immunizations become another revenue stream without a significant increase in required man hours. I am also unsure on whether nurses require supervision, and if so, if that can be done by a pharmacist. Technically the immunizations have to be setup by a protocol signed and, at least on paper, monitored by a physician.

    Granted this is primarily theoretical, but based on the pharmacist who supervised my immunizations, it works quite well in his store.
  15. pharmacology888

    pharmacology888

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    I have thought about it in terms of augmentation, but wouldn't that overlap on my group member's part which talks about the benefits of having pharmacists perform vaccinations in community pharmacies/hospitals? I just don't know how to direct my part to specifically promoting pharmacists to administer vaccinations over doctors. Should I change my topic?
    I really appreciate everyone's comments; these comments have helped me to sort out my thoughts a bit.
  16. soyroger

    soyroger New Member

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    Last year I had a basic student insurance plan that only covered sickness and injury. When I went for my physical and shots required by school I had to pay for everything. Not all insurance plans cover the services you'll likely need.
  17. pharmacology888

    pharmacology888

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    I have thought about it in terms of augmentation, but wouldn't that overlap on my group member's part which talks about the benefits of having pharmacists perform vaccinations in community pharmacies/hospitals? I just don't know how to direct my part to specifically promoting pharmacists to administer vaccinations over doctors. Should I change my topic?
    I really appreciate everyone's comments; these comments have helped me to sort out my thoughts a bit.
  18. confettiflyer

    confettiflyer Unicorn w/ dirty wings

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    Yeah all my first year pharm friends at USC got their immunization certificates, so yeah they're shooting people up like it's going out of style.
  19. BMBiology

    BMBiology on maternity leave (again)

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    A lot of the retail pharmacies get the flu vaccines way before the physicians so for high risk patients who want to get their immunization in september, the pharmacy is a great option.

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