Team delivered over 4,000 vaccinations to children
Boots UK has trialled a brand new initiative that has seen Boots Pharmacy Technicians visiting schools on the Isle of Wight to administer nasal flu vaccinations for children ages 4 – 11 years. This is the first time this has been done in the UK.
Usually, in pharmacy-delivered vaccination services, pharmacists administer the vaccinations, however Boots were keen to pilot a new way of working, where Pharmacy Technicians would administer the vaccinations which had been prescribed by a Boots Independent Prescriber using a Patient Specific Direction.
Pharmacy Technicians Sharon Bunch and Hannah Hine led the trial, supported by Pharmacist Independent Prescriber, Krupa Patel who prescribed the vaccines for the children. During the 6 week pilot, they delivered over 4,250 vaccinations.
Boots provided specialist training for the team, which saw their confidence grow as they learned on the spot techniques to deal with the large number of children and their varied attitudes to having the vaccination.
Marc Donovan, Chief Pharmacist at Boots UK, said: “I’d like to get to a future where pharmacy technicians can consistently offer a deeper level of care to our patients and this was a great opportunity to demonstrate the power of the whole pharmacy team.
“The trial was a success and we have many learnings to take forward about how we can develop this scheme and roll it out wider in the future. The incredible work of the team has led the way for Independent Prescribers and pharmacy technicians to work together in a new way, while also protecting the health of thousands of children.”
Sharon Bunch, added: “It was an amazing opportunity for us to be able to offer this service and be a pioneer for the industry. It was a great chance for us to show what we can do, and to know that we were the first two people to do this makes me very proud. It shows that pharmacy technicians can step up and take on responsibilities that are outside of our day-to-day roles.”
Hannah Hine commented: “It was a privilege to be involved in such a new initiative and I’m really pleased it proved to be a success. We tried to make it a happy experience for the children and make it fun to remove any fears they might have about having a vaccination.”
Liz Fidler, President of the Association of Pharmacy Technicians UK (APTUK), said: “This is a real example of utilising the knowledge and skills of the pharmacy technician workforce to optimise patient care and experience. I am delighted that further work will be undertaken to embed the contribution pharmacy technicians can make using Patient Specific Directions. APTUK will be inviting Sharon, Hannah and Krupa to present their valuable work at the APTUK conference in September.”