Kingston pharmacies prepare to administer doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine as part of roll out
OTTAWA -- Some pharmacies in Kingston will be allowed to administer the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, as part of a pilot project rolling out across Ontario.
Kingston is one of only three regions to allow doses of the vaccine to be administered at pharmacies in a test run to use the AstraZeneca vaccines.
The Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Public Health says pharmacies will begin the test run by next Wednesday, and ten pharmacies across the region have been asked to be a part of it.
"Each pharmacy should commit to providing at least 40 doses of vaccine a day at each site," explained medical officer of health Dr. Kieran Moore during a media conference Thursday. "So if you think about it that would bring on an additional capacity locally of 400 additional doses, which I think is remarkable."
Pharmacist Dayna Milner says while she doesn't know if her pharmacy will be chosen for the pilot project, she is ready to administer the vaccine.
"I’m excited, I think the biggest take away is this is part of our job, we’ve done it before," Milner tells CTV News Ottawa.
"We learned a lot from distributing this year’s flu vaccine, we already have the infrastructure in place... (we) sanitize afterwards, make sure there’s not too many people in the store. With that we kind of know how to get the COVID vaccine to people."
The doses will primarily be AstraZeneca, which will be administered to Ontarians between the ages of 60 and 64.
Ontario Minister of Health Christine Elliott says that's because the vaccine is easier to handle.
"It can be moved more easily, it doesn't have the same kind of temperature requirements that the Pfizer vaccine has and to a lesser extent Moderna," Elliott explained.
Dr. Moore said pharmacies will be able to use their own booking system to reach out to their clients, with more information on how that will work in the coming days.
All the data information will have to be filtered and loaded into the COVax-ON portal, the province's new appointment based booking system.
He said the test run is expected to last for two weeks, when it could branch out further across the province.