Latest Updates: Vaccinations and Emergency Medicines

An amendment to the legislation which provides for the provision of vaccinations and emergency medicines by pharmacists (SI449/2015) came into effect in December 2018. The amendment has introduced changes to allow pharmacists to administer certain vaccinations and emergency medicines through new routes of administration, and/or in accordance with national guidelines, where the relevant training has been completed.

The amendment has introduced changes which include allowing:

  • Herpes Zoster vaccine for injection to be administered by intramuscular or subcutaneous injection
  • Pneumococcal Polysaccharide vaccine solution for injection to be administered by intramuscular or subcutaneous injection
  • Naloxone nasal spray to be administered

The amendment also allows for Epinephrine (adrenaline) injection and Salbutamol 100mcg multi dose inhaler to be administered in accordance with the Summary of Product Characteristics (SmPC) of the product or relevant national guidelines.

In light of the changes introduced, the Naloxone training programme will be updated to include intranasal administration. The PSI is liaising with the HSE and IIOP in relation to the programme update and the updated programme will be available in due course. Pharmacists must undertake updated training in order to be able to administer Naloxone intranasally.

All pharmacists must have up to date training, in the relevant route of administration, in order to deliver vaccination and emergency medicines services. Pharmacists who have undertaken the current training for the delivery of Herpes Zoster vaccination, Pneumococcal Polysaccharide vaccination, Adrenaline injection and Salbutamol are not required to repeat or undertake additional training to facilitate the changes in the legislation. Pharmacists must make themselves aware of the new provisions of the legislation, in the context of the medicines, SmPcs and national guidelines.

Read more information on the current training requirements.