Recognition due to the unique role of pharmacy staff during the pandemic

Recognition due to the unique role of pharmacy staff during the pandemic

The Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) has called on the Minister for Health to ensure that the unique role of community pharmacy teams during the pandemic is recognised on a par with all other frontline workers.

Following reports that hospital and nursing home workers are to receive a €1,000 gratuity for their service during the pandemic IPU President Dermot Twomey said “Community pharmacies have played a unique and vital role during the pandemic. The sector remained open through each lockdown and maintained a full service ensuring continued medicine supply to patients.

“During the worst of the public health emergency and before vaccines were available members of Government publicly commended the role of pharmacies. Pharmacy teams went above and beyond, providing an essential service to patients and the public in extraordinarily difficult circumstances.

“This act of maintaining services has come at considerable cost to pharmacies and pharmacy staff. There has been elevated levels of stress, anxiety and burnout among pharmacists during the pandemic, while all pharmacy staff have consistently operated at a higher risk of exposure to COVID than many other healthcare professions.

“As we emerge from the COVD-19 pandemic, it is appropriate that the monumental efforts made by every healthcare worker is recognised and rewarded. This must include the 13,300 women and men in the community pharmacy sector whose efforts on the front lines have ensured continued healthcare to every community in Ireland throughout the pandemic.”

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