HHS Authorizes Pharmacists and Interns to Administer COVID-19 Vaccines

HHS authorizes pharmacists and interns to administer COVID-19 vaccines

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced today that pharmacists and pharmacy interns would be authorized to administer COVID-19 vaccines when they become available.

The new guidance issued under the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) allows state-licensed pharmacists to order FDA-approved COVID-19 vaccinations and administer them to any individual ages 3 or older. The guidance also allows state-licensed or registered pharmacy interns to administer the vaccines under the supervision of a pharmacist.

“This action builds upon our Administration’s progress toward delivering a safe, effective, and widely available vaccine by 2021,” said Assistant Secretary for Health ADM Brett P. Giroir, M.D. “Allowing pharmacists to order and administer COVID-19 vaccines will greatly expand convenient access for the American people.”

In order to administer the vaccines, pharmacists and pharmacy interns must satisfy various requirements such as training programs, CPR certification, and immunization-related continuing education. A full list of the requirements can be found in the official guidance here.

According to the release, the authorization preempts any state and local laws that prohibit or effectively prohibits those who satisfy the requirements as listed in the guidance.