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vaccinations; vaccine; pharmacies; long-term care; nursing

MADISON ⏤ Vaccinations are officially underway at Wisconsin’s skilled nursing facilities thanks to a private-public partnership with pharmacies.

On Monday, residents and staff at such facilities in the state started receiving doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccinations were part of the state’s Pharmacy Partnership Program for Long-Term Care.

The program is a private-public partnership that pairs eligible long-term care facilities with Walgreens or CVS. This partnership provides free, on-site COVID-19 vaccination for residents and staff.

The pharmacies will also provide complete vaccine management for the facilities, including storage and handling, scheduling, administration and meeting reporting requirements.

“This partnership will help reduce the strain on our long-term care facilities and help deliver the
vaccine to those in higher-risk populations,” Gov. Tony Evers said in a news release.

“Protecting our most vulnerable Wisconsinites is a top priority and will be a critical step for the success of Wisconsin’s COVID-19 Vaccine Program.”

More than 56,000 doses allocated

The state Department of Health Services has allocated 56,800 doses of the
Moderna vaccine to the federal pharmacy partners to initiate vaccinating long-term care
residents and staff.

Medical personnel can easily transport the Moderna vaccine because it does not require special low-temperature handling. This also allows them to administer it in rural areas.

To last about two months

DHS expects the program to continue at participating facilities for approximately two months.

After this initial phase, facilities may continue working with the federal pharmacy partner they were matched with.

They also can choose to work with another pharmacy provider enrolled with the state to provide the COVID-19 vaccine.

However, the COVID-19 vaccination process continues to change rapidly. As a result, DHS will continue to provide updates on vaccine information as they become available.

For up-to-date information, please visit https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/vaccine.htm.

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