THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 2016

PCAN urges lawmakers to expand access to vaccines

Pharmacy Choice and Access Now, a group of consumers, pharmacists and local businesses, urged Pennsylvania lawmakers on Thursday to expand access to vaccines.

PCAN asked lawmakers to increase the types of vaccines that pharmacists can administer. The current state law allows pharmacists to administer some vaccines to adults, but not children.

"More than 50,000 adults and 300 children die from vaccine-preventable diseases or from their complications each year in the U.S. alone - I think we can do better than that," PCAN Chair Bill Mincy said. "Expanding immunization authority for pharmacists is a sure way to increase access to vaccines and keep our communities healthy. I encourage state legislators to take a look at current laws and consider ways to achieve this."

Expanding the number of vaccines that pharmacists can administer would make vaccines available to many people who may not be able to afford a doctor's appointment to have their children vaccinated.

"Vaccines are considered to be one of the safest, most efficient and cost-effective preventative measures against certain diseases, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention," Mincy said. "Expanding access is an important step toward improving the health and well-being of our children, our families and our communities."