Over 1.3 million flu jabs were administered by community pharmacists in England in 2017/18, the NHS has announced.
Community pharmacist gave out 1,344,069 flu vaccinations during last year’s flu season as part of the nationally commissioned service, according to figures published by the NHS Business Services Authority (NHS BSA).
This is an increase of almost 400,000 (393,304) vaccinations of last year’s flu season.
Almost 9,000 (8,981) community pharmacies (77%) of English community pharmacies offered the national service during this period, with each of these pharmacies completing an average of 150 vaccinations.
However, one contractor ‘greatly exceeded’ this by administering over 1,000 vaccinations, according to the Pharmaceutical Services Negotiating Committee (PSNC).
An additional 530 contractors provided the service in 2017/18 compared than in the previous year.
‘Going up year after year’
Alastair Buxton, PSNC director of NHS services, said: ‘This is a hugely significant milestone for community pharmacy teams across the country and it is a testament to their hard work, dedication and commitment to deliver the best service to their patients, despite the current pressures facing the sector.
‘Pharmacy teams all over the country have done a fantastic job to promote and provide the Flu Vaccination Service and in this way have played an important part in helping patients and the NHS to cope with the particularly challenging winter we have all just experienced.
‘It comes as no surprise that the number of vaccines administered in pharmacies is going up year after year; pharmacy teams have a real appetite to offer patients and local communities more clinical services and ease burden on other healthcare providers.’