ARLINGTON, Va. – Timed with the formal end of the COVID-19 public health emergency on Thursday, a National Association of Chain Drug Stores (NACDS) television and digital ad is punctuating the occasion with a “thank you” to pharmacists and pharmacy teams.
The above ad states:
“It’s a normal day again in America. We’ve all been through a lot the past few years. But when things have seemed most uncertain there has been one constant, one trusted force for hope: America’s pharmacists. Dedicated, relentless, with more than 300 million COVID shots given in local pharmacies. With a commitment to a healthy America that is unbreakable – that opened the nation and our lives. It’s a normal day again. Thank you.”
The TV ad will begin to appear on Thursday in the Washington, D.C. market, and will extend to selected states. NACDS began to distribute the ad digitally today.
In releasing the ad, NACDS President and Chief Executive Officer Steven Anderson said, “We want pharmacists and pharmacy teams to know that their dedication, professionalism, knowledge, trust, accessibility, and sacrifice remain deeply appreciated and top-of-mind. They helped to save and reopen America, in ways that include the more than 302 million COVID-19 vaccinations provided in pharmacies – including more than two-thirds of all adult COVID-19 vaccinations given during the 2022-2023 season. Pharmacists and pharmacy teams also helped to address individuals’ needs within their communities, as the healthcare professionals who kept their doors open at a time of extreme concern and uncertainty.
“Just as NACDS advised the federal and state governments of policies needed to make possible pharmacy’s pandemic response, we will continue to convey clearly the policies necessary for the pharmacy access that patients need and expect. In just a few examples, states need to make permanent the pharmacy access made possible by the federal PREP Act (Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act). The U.S. Congress needs to enact the Equitable Community Access to Pharmacist Services Act (H.R. 1770) to ensure Medicare beneficiaries have access to pharmacist services approved by the states. The federal and state governments need to do their part to bring about comprehensive pharmacy benefit manager (PBM) reform to take on the practices of pharmaceutical middlemen.”
Over a one-week stretch in April, NACDS lauded two major victories for patient access. The Biden Administration announced it would extend through December 2024 many of the PREP Act pharmacy-access provisions and also announced action on COVID-19 vaccine access for uninsured individuals. NACDS had advocated consistently for these initiatives over the course of approximately two years.
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