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Open AccessArticle

Readiness and Willingness to Provide Immunization Services after Pilot Vaccination Training: A Survey among Community Pharmacists Trained and Not Trained in Immunization during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Poland

1
Faculty of Medicine, Collegium Medicum, Cardinal Stefan Wyszyński University, 01-938 Warsaw, Poland
2
Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, Collegium, Medicum in Bydgoszcz, 85-089 Bydgoszcz, Poland
3
Collegium of Business Administration, Warsaw School of Economics, 02-513 Warsaw, Poland
4
Polish Pharmaceutical Group, 91-342 Łódź, Poland
5
Solec Hospital, 00-382 Warsaw, Poland
6
Department of Economics and Medical Law, Medical University of Warsaw, 00-791 Warsaw, Poland
7
Department of Economic and System Analysis, National Institute of Public Health-National Institute of Hygiene, 00-791 Warsaw, Poland
8
Department of Computer Science and Medical Statistics with the Studio of Remote Learning, Medical University of Lublin, 20-954 Lublin, Poland
9
Department of Epidemiology, National Institute of Public Health-National Institute of Hygiene, 00-791 Warsaw, Poland
10
Hipolit Cegielski State University of Applied Sciences, 62-200 Gniezno, Poland
11
Department of Biostatistics and Neural Networks, Medical University of Gdansk, Debinki 1, 80-211 Gdansk, Poland
12
First Department of Cardiology, Medical University of Gdansk, Debinki 7, 80-211 Gdansk, Poland
13
Emergency Care Gateway (ECG), Milton Keynes MK13 9AP, UK
14
Department of Public Health, Medical University of Warsaw, 02-097 Warsaw, Poland
15
National Institute of Public Health-National Institute of Hygiene, 00-791 Warsaw, Poland
16
Medication Safety Research Chair, College of Pharmacy, King Saud University, Riyadh 4545, Saudi Arabia
17
College of Pharmacy-Department of Clinical Pharmacy, King Saud University, Riyadh 4545, Saudi Arabia
18
Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario, Ottawa, ON K1H 8L1, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(2), 599; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020599
Received: 27 November 2020 / Revised: 7 January 2021 / Accepted: 8 January 2021 / Published: 12 January 2021
Background: Immunization rates among the adult population in Poland are below desired targets, urging the need to expand this service in the community. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the ultimate goals for limiting the spread of the infection are vaccines against SARS-CoV-2. Pharmaceutical companies are in a race for the fastest possible way to deliver vaccines. Community pharmacists in Poland are recognised as an accessible yet underutilised group of medical professionals. Therefore, involving pharmacists in vaccinations may have beneficial results for the healthcare system. Objectives: The objectives of this study were to assess the readiness and willingness of community pharmacists following the Pharmacist Without Borders project who had either been trained or not in providing immunization services, and to identify the factors that may support the implementation of such services in Poland. Methods: This study was conducted among pharmacists between February and August 2020 in Poland. A survey was developed to determine their readiness to provide vaccination services in their pharmacies, to recognise any barriers to vaccinations, as well as the factors necessary to implement vaccination services in Polish pharmacies. Results: A total of 1777 pharmacists participated in the study, comprising 127 (7.1%) pharmacists trained in vaccinations during the Pharmacists Without Borders project and 1650 (92.9%) pharmacists not participating in the workshops. Pharmacists participating in the workshops more often indicated that providing vaccinations in community pharmacies would improve the overall vaccination rate (p = 0.0001), and that pharmacists could play an important role in advertising and promoting vaccinations (p = 0.0001). For the pharmacists not participating in the workshops, they indicated to a much greater extent possible barriers affecting the readiness to provide vaccinations in pharmacies. They most often pointed out that vaccination services would result in a significant workload increase (p = 0.0001), that pharmacies were not adapted to immunization, and that there were not enough training courses for pharmacists (p = 0.0001). Conclusion: The pharmacists working in community pharmacies indicated many advantages of vaccinations in pharmacies. This study identified barriers to the introduction of vaccinations and factors necessary to implement these services in pharmacies. The pharmacists trained during the immunization programme of the Pharmacists Without Borders project showed a greater readiness to provide immunization services. View Full-Text
Keywords: community pharmacists; vaccines; immunization services; Poland; Pharmacist Without Borders project community pharmacists; vaccines; immunization services; Poland; Pharmacist Without Borders project
MDPI and ACS Style

Merks, P.; Religioni, U.; Bilmin, K.; Lewicki, J.; Jakubowska, M.; Waksmundzka-Walczuk, A.; Czerw, A.; Barańska, A.; Bogusz, J.; Plagens-Rotman, K.; Świetlik, D.; Drelich, E.; Świeczkowski, D.; Lambert, J.; Jaguszewski, M.; Juszczyk, G.; Balkhi, B.; Vaillancourt, R. Readiness and Willingness to Provide Immunization Services after Pilot Vaccination Training: A Survey among Community Pharmacists Trained and Not Trained in Immunization during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Poland. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 599. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020599

AMA Style

Merks P, Religioni U, Bilmin K, Lewicki J, Jakubowska M, Waksmundzka-Walczuk A, Czerw A, Barańska A, Bogusz J, Plagens-Rotman K, Świetlik D, Drelich E, Świeczkowski D, Lambert J, Jaguszewski M, Juszczyk G, Balkhi B, Vaillancourt R. Readiness and Willingness to Provide Immunization Services after Pilot Vaccination Training: A Survey among Community Pharmacists Trained and Not Trained in Immunization during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Poland. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(2):599. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020599

Chicago/Turabian Style

Merks, Piotr; Religioni, Urszula; Bilmin, Krzysztof; Lewicki, Jedrzej; Jakubowska, Marta; Waksmundzka-Walczuk, Anna; Czerw, Aleksandra; Barańska, Agnieszka; Bogusz, Joanna; Plagens-Rotman, Katarzyna; Świetlik, Dariusz; Drelich, Ewelina; Świeczkowski, Damian; Lambert, Jane; Jaguszewski, Miłosz; Juszczyk, Grzegorz; Balkhi, Bander; Vaillancourt, Regis. 2021. "Readiness and Willingness to Provide Immunization Services after Pilot Vaccination Training: A Survey among Community Pharmacists Trained and Not Trained in Immunization during the COVID-19 Pandemic in Poland" Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 18, no. 2: 599. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18020599

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