Walgreens and CVS have been tasked by the government with a vaccination deal for nursing homes. The deal would have the two drugstore giants distribute an eventual COVID-19 vaccine to nursing homes across the country. Nursing homes have been a hotbed for the COVID-19 virus to spread throughout the United States.
Nursing homes can opt into this program beginning this week, and those who choose to have the program will get the vaccine 24 to 48 hours after the Food and Drug Administration grants emergency approval to these vaccines. While providers do not have to use Walgreens or CVS, the HHS believes the size and scale of their operations will be the most efficient way to distribute a vaccine in a timely manner.
Along with those companies’ infrastructure are considered to be major factors according to the Department of Health and Human Services. The HHS is asking both Walgreens and CVS to oversee the vaccine distribution operations.
However, cold storage is expected to be one of the major hiccups in the distribution process. Pfizer, who is currently developing a vaccine, requires temperatures as low as negative 94 degrees Fahrenheit for proper storage. However, the Pfizer vaccine is the only one that requires extremely cold storage. However Maj. Gen. Chris Sharpsten, the US Army official spearheading the supply and distribution process for Operation Warp Speed (The operation to get a vaccine out as soon as possible), said that the cold storage infrastructure is mostly in place with shipping containers that can store the vaccine in dry ice.
Due to the cost of distribution and obtaining of the vaccines being covered by the government, CVS and Walgreens will be responsible for billing Medicare, Medicaid, and private payers. Individual states have to approve both CVS and Walgreens before they can receive the reimbursements for the payments.
As a vaccine becomes closer and closer to reality, getting the backing of two big pharma players is huge for the widespread distribution of the vaccine in the quickest manner possible. There is no official timeline on when a vaccine could become available.
We hope this information on the Vaccination deal for nursing homes is helpful to you.
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