Louth pharmacist supports Dundalk Democrat vaccine rollout petition
A local pharmacist has backed the Dundalk Democrat’s campaign for Covid-19 vaccines to be delivered straight into our community through pharmacies.
The Dundalk Democrat, along with its sister titles in the Iconic Newspaper group, is backing local pharmacies to deliver the Covid 19 vaccines to our communities. They have launched a petition to Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly.
Pharmacist Mark McPhillips of Ardee Pharmacy said they are ready to roll out the Covid-19 vaccine once the Government gives them the green light.
“We are prepared and ready to start the process of administering Covid-19 vaccinations once we get the go-ahead that we can”, he said.
“We have a proven track record of administering flu vaccinations and are trusted by our patients.
“The quicker and safer we roll out the Covid-19 vaccine the better and we want to be part of that.
“With the volume of vaccines that need to be administered it is all hands on deck and we are ready and willing to work together with GPs to ensure the fast and safe rollout of it.”
Mr McPhillips said that he and his colleague pharmacist Claire McMahon are ready to start the rollout to local people once the Government’s plan is in place.
With soaring cases and hospital admissions, the need for an effective vaccine rollout to see our community open up once again will be vital. Louth has the second-highest 14-day incidence rate of the virus in Ireland, currently standing at 2,302.1, well above the national average of 1,410.3. The vaccine rollout in the county began among nursing home residents and healthcare staff last week but there is widespread public frustration at the perceived slow pace of Ireland's rollout.
To that end, Iconic Newspapers, publisher of the Dundalk Democrat, have started a petition - http://chng.it/dsbxr4gy - to the Minister for Health, Stephen Donnelly so the people of Louth can let the government know that they believe that the vaccine should be delivered straight to our local communities - through our local pharmacies who have a track record of administering flu vaccines.
“Talking to all our editors, while Covid 19 is dominating news coverage, and will continue to do so, with a vaccine there is hope. But many believe that it could be done better, that we are lagging behind and want more information on what is happening. It is obvious why we need a vaccine. We now know what needs to be done. It’s all about the how and the when now,” said Brian Keyes, Editorial Operations Director for Iconic Newspapers.
“We need to put our communities front and centre in this rollout, and that means local pharmacies. They are still open, still there for locals, and they have a proven track record with administering the flu vaccine. Between pharmacists and GPs, 1.1m flu vaccines have been administered since September last. They are trusted, and that’s important. They need PPE, they need to be informed and they need to lead the charge.
“We can’t be left behind, in particular our rural communities. In many villages, a pharmacy is one of the few places open, and it’s important for communities. The AstraZeneca vaccine will hopefully be here in a matter of weeks, but we need to plan now, we need to give people hope and the government needs to get our pharmacies involved right away,” he added.
“It’s the only thing people are talking about, and there is frustration when we see rollouts in other countries moving ahead at pace. We know what we can do here and the potential that pharmacies, in particular, have to lead the rollout. We need to get back to meeting family and friends again, to playing together again, back to school, opening up our businesses again. Enjoying the simple pleasures. We have started a petition, calling for our pharmacies to lead the charge in getting this vaccine to our communities. You can comment on the Dundalk Democrat Facebook, or follow us on Twitter - #bestshot.”