FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – Since the Governor announced those in phase 1-B can start to get vaccinated pharmacies have had their hands full.
Julie Stewart is a pharmacist at Medical Arts Pharmacy in Washington country, which has been distributing the vaccine and she says the process has been a serious undertaking.
Stewart says, “we had a waitlist that was five-hundred deep within two days as soon as the Governor released the first part of 1-b and that is very tough to manage on top of the regular pharmacy business.”
Dr. Jennifer Dillaha with the ADH says she’s pleased with how quickly pharmacists have been able to distribute the vaccine but wishes there was a greater supply.
“Unfortunately we dont have a lot of vaccines yet to give people so that’s the biggest challenge of 1-B, we have a lot of people to vaccinate but few doses,” says Dillaha.
Out of the supply that Arkansas has received, Dillaha and Stewart agree there has been very little waste.
Stewart says, “we have not wasted a single dose, we have tried to plan out clinics in such a way that to have some idea of how many doses we are going to give.”
Dillaha adds “we have told vaccinators that if you have a dose that needs to be used, and there is no one there, find someone even if they’re not 1-A or 1-B get that dose in someone’s arm.”
Because of the limited supply compared to demand, Dillaha says it is hard to forecast exactly how long it will take to get through phase 1-B but expects it to be in months not weeks.