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Fighting COVID-19 one vaccination at a time

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, independent pharmacies have gone above and beyond on the frontlines, providing continuous care to their communities and so much more. They helped curb the spread of coronavirus by providing timely guidance to their patients online and quickly implementing in-store safety measures. They went to great lengths to make hand sanitizer available to the masses. They eased burdens, lifted spirits, and gave back to their communities in all kinds of creative ways.

From education to vaccination and all the acts of kindness in between, there are countless examples of humble heroism taking place every day in pharmacies across the country. Now, with Good Neighbor Pharmacy locations stepping up once again as trusted and accessible vaccinators, we’re proud to profile fearless pharmacies as they strive to put an end to the pandemic. Find a local Good Neighbor Pharmacy offering the COVID-19 vaccine here.

Ochoa's Pharmacy

Ochoa’s PharmacyEdinburg, Texas

"To be able to provide the vaccine, it's a blessing. We're so grateful. And to be able to do this alongside my father, who's also a pharmacist, is the icing on the cake."

Alessandra Ochoa, PharmD, RPh

Less than 15 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border, Ochoa’s Pharmacy worked diligently to meet state requirements and secure allocation of the Moderna vaccine. They have a large percentage of patients who are elderly and unable to wait for hours in line at a mass vaccination site, so it was a major win to be able to administer the vaccine at their pharmacy where their patients feel most comfortable.

Plano Pharmacy

Plano PharmacyPlano, Texas

Once Plano Pharmacy received word that they were approved to receive COVID-19 vaccine as part of the Texas state-run program, they immediately ramped up their efforts to get patients signed up on their waiting list. Before long they were receiving allocations, scheduling appointments, and vaccinating healthcare workers, people with medical conditions, and people 65 and older per state and CDC guidelines. They are proudly serving the Dallas-Fort Worth area and delivering patient experiences that are exceeding expectations.

From the patient’s perspective:

Glynnis, a senior director of human resources at AmerisourceBergen, was waiting patiently with her spouse to hear from their family physician about getting the COVID-19 vaccine in the doctor’s office. They were both eligible to receive their shots based on the vaccination phase Texas was in at the time, but they still hadn’t been notified about scheduling an appointment. That’s when one of her neighbors told her that their local Good Neighbor Pharmacy, Plano Pharmacy, had the Moderna vaccine and was accepting appointments for eligible patients.

Glynnis’s response: “Imagine my surprise when I discovered one of our customers was vaccinating close by. I was smiling ear to ear! My spouse and I were both able to schedule appointments and get our shots. It was great seeing all the hard work of my associates at AmerisourceBergen and Good Neighbor Pharmacy coming to fruition right here in my community. Together with independent pharmacies like Plano Pharmacy, we’re making such an impact.”

Quality Care Pharmacy

Quality Care PharmacyCarlisle, Pennsylvania

Quality Care Pharmacy participated in Phase 1A of Pennsylvania’s state-run program by vaccinating those most at risk of illness, including health care workers, patients living in long-term care facilities, people age 65 and older, and individuals with high-risk conditions. They’ve also held vaccination clinics for first responders like the members of the Carlisle Fire Department and Carlisle Police Department.

From the patient’s perspective: Drew, a two-time cancer survivor and bone marrow transplant recipient, was told by his oncologist that he was qualified to receive a COVID-19 vaccination as part of Phase 1A and that he should contact his family doctor as soon as possible to schedule an appointment. Unfortunately, his primary care physician wasn’t vaccinating.

Drew was then bounced around a few different avenues without any luck. Losing hope, he reached out to Good Neighbor Pharmacy to see if any of our independent stores were participating in Phase 1A. Within a couple hours, a Good Neighbor Pharmacy manager connected with the Business Coaching team and coach Brandon Antinopoulos was on the phone talking to Drew about his options.

At that time, there weren’t any Good Neighbor Pharmacy members vaccinating in Philadelphia where Drew is located, but Brandon shared that Quality Care Pharmacy and their affiliated stores had received allocations and were hosting clinics in the Harrisburg area. Drew was more than willing to make the 100-mile drive to get the vaccine, which for him was absolutely necessary due to his high-risk status. Brandon provided him the web address to the pharmacy’s scheduling platform over the phone and Drew was able to book his appointment on the spot.

Drew’s response: “I actually got through. I can’t believe this. Is this true? Thank you SO MUCH! I really can’t thank you enough. All good vibes your way.”

Rossi Pharmacy

Rossi PharmacyBrooklyn, New York

"We have to do everything we can to keep providing, keep vaccinating people. And the patients have loved it because they got to get vaccinated somewhere local."

Ambar Keluskar, Supervising Pharmacist

When Rossi Pharmacy experienced difficulties getting elderly patients to schedule appointments online, they started doing pop-up vaccination events at senior affordable housing facilities and promoting them on Facebook. They partnered with the office of State Senator Jabari Brisport to identify East New York residents that were homebound or struggling to find appointments elsewhere and brought the vaccine to them. They’ve now administered doses to hundreds of people across several locations, including Stonewall House, an affordable housing complex for LGBTQ+ seniors operated by SAGE.

Springfield Pharmacy

Springfield PharmacySpringfield, Pennsylvania

"We’re always having to educate our patients, advocate for them, and look out for them because nobody else will. It’s our job to help them stay current, help them get on that list, and help them get the vaccine because they need it."

Chichi Ilonzo Momah, COO and Pharmacist-in-Charge

Springfield Pharmacy was one of the first independent community pharmacies in the Philadelphia area to administer the COVID-19 vaccine to patients age 75 and older as part of Phase 1A. To handle the overwhelming demand for the vaccine, they created a Google form and put that link on their website to start building a waiting list, which quickly grew into the thousands by word of mouth alone. An additional staff member was also brought onboard to help manage vaccination appointments as they work hard to educate patients about the importance of getting the vaccine, set honest expectations with their community, and administer shots as quickly as possible when they receive allocations.

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