State works to make vaccines more accessible offering shots in homes

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FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) – As Governor Hutchinson reports a slowing demand of COVID-19 vaccines, Arkansas healthcare workers are now going the extra mile to get shots in arms.

The state is ramping up efforts to get vaccines closer to Arkansans for accessibility. For many people, a vaccine is just a short drive away, but that is not the case for everyone.

“The Arkansas Pharmacists Association is taking the lead in helping people that can’t get to a vaccine location get the vaccine, whether they’re homebound or lack transportation,” said Director of Professional Affairs for APA, Nicki Hilliard.

Hilliard said thanks to a recent grant, 75 counties across the state now have coordinators that pair people in need of vaccines at home with pharmacies able to give them.

We just tried to make sure everyone gets the healthcare that they need. It’s not just pharmacists, we have nurses and EMS and health care agencies. Everyone’s working together to make this happen.”

-NICKI HILLIARD, DIRECTOR OF PROFESSIONAL AFFAIRS, ARKANSAS PHARMACISTS ASSOCIATION

Medical Arts Pharmacy was one that already had plans in the works to get shots to people at home.

“We are working with the Fayetteville Housing Authority to try and go into at least some neighborhoods where transportation is a little more difficult and we can be there close by.,” said pharmacist, Julie Stewart.

Stewart said with more than enough shots available, she is happy to go the extra mile to get these shots to people directly.

If there’s people out there that are willing to get it that just aren’t able to then we definitely want to be able to reach those people.”

-JULIE STEWART, PHARMACIST, MEDICAL ARTS PHARMACY

To request a vaccine at home, Arkansans are encouraged to call the vaccine hotline to get connected with a coordinator. The hotline number is 1-800-895-6030.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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